avatar_McColm

Tail-sitting vertical take off and landing for fixed winged aircraft

Started by McColm, February 26, 2011, 05:50:31 AM

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McColm

Hi,
Picture the scene; you're running out of fuel in your F-14. The carrier deck is damaged and the nearest land is 3,000NM away. Mid Atlantic, ditching is not an option. As you approach the carrier, GPS and lasers line up to give you direction and speed read-outs. You stall the plane over the docking area, it slides backwards into the retataining holder. Clunck and you've landed, mind your step!!
Fact or fiction?

Well fact, yes the US Navy have been looking into this since the 1950s until the 1980s. The USN were looking for a hybird jet to operate from a vertical take-off, either landing conventionally or using vectored thrust.
Turboprops were used but lacked the power i.e. Convair XFY1 'Pogo', Lockheed XFV-1 Salmon.
The Ryan X-13 Vertijet, the first jet-powered aircraft to take-off vertically, transition to horizontal flight and then return. First flight December 1955.
The French had a go with the C.450-01 Coleoptere.

I'm talking about taking-off and landing with the nose pointing upwards (skywards). As long as the take-off/landing area was wide enough for the wings to clear and long enough for the tail/fuselage, plus the rig to hold the aircaft in place and a ladder so the crew can get in and out. Rearming maybe tricky, refueling and maintenance should be okay. What do you think?

PR19_Kit

For carrier aircraft you'd have to re-think the shape of the hangar deck of the carrier as well as the deck area, if only to make somewhere to store the nose upwards stance Air Group.

It would mean that every aircraft would be seriously overpowered for 'normal' flight, and there's another thread about that going on here right now, the one that talks about the relative thrust and load capabilities of the F-16/Harrier.
Kit's Rule 1 ) Any aircraft can be improved by fitting longer wings, and/or a longer fuselage
Kit's Rule 2) The backstory can always be changed to suit the model

...and I'm not a closeted 'Take That' fan, I'm a REAL fan! :)

Regards
Kit

Hobbes

Well, modern fighters have a very high thrust:weight ratio anyway (more than 1:1 for some, which would be enough to do this).

Ground erosion would be a problem (as you'd need afterburners for takeoff), and you'd need a reaction control system for low-speed and vertical flight.

Weaver

Saw an ingenious bit of manufacturer's artwork that had the carrier's deck-edge lifts pivoting upwards to 90 deg and the VATOL fighters "hooking" onto them by their nosewheels. Solves the problems of hanger deck design and access because once the fighter was hooked and shut down, the elevator would just return to the horizontal and operate normally. Also solves the jetwash problem because the jet is hanging over the side.

Sounds mad, but it's much the same procedure as was used by the Ryan Vertijet. The only downside I can immediately see (apart from general complication) is that the RCS would have to be damn powerful to push the aircraft sideways at the same rate as the carrier's forward speed, i.e. upto 30kts.

"Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."
 - Morpheus in Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

"I dunno, I'm making this up as I go."
 - Indiana Jones '

GTX

Quote from: McColm on February 26, 2011, 05:50:31 AM
Hi,
Picture the scene; you're running out of fuel in your F-14. The carrier deck is damaged and the nearest land is 3,000NM away. Mid Atlantic, ditching is not an option. As you approach the carrier, GPS and lasers line up to give you direction and speed read-outs. You stall the plane over the docking area, it slides backwards into the retataining holder. Clunck and you've landed, mind your step!!


You make it sound so easy...when in reality it wasn't.

Regards,

Greg
All hail the God of Frustration!!!

GTX

Quote from: Weaver on February 26, 2011, 11:23:55 AM
Saw an ingenious bit of manufacturer's artwork that had the carrier's deck-edge lifts pivoting upwards to 90 deg and the VATOL fighters "hooking" onto them by their nosewheels. Solves the problems of hanger deck design and access because once the fighter was hooked and shut down, the elevator would just return to the horizontal and operate normally. Also solves the jetwash problem because the jet is hanging over the side.


I assume you mean ones like this - see attached.

Regards,

Greg
All hail the God of Frustration!!!

PR19_Kit

Once they've solved the mechanical and hydraulic problems of hingeing the lifts like that, why not pivot them across the beam line of the ship rather than along it? Then the aircraft could use it's vectored thrust bit to 'chase' the ship when it was landing, and use it again to push itself back and up to take off?
Kit's Rule 1 ) Any aircraft can be improved by fitting longer wings, and/or a longer fuselage
Kit's Rule 2) The backstory can always be changed to suit the model

...and I'm not a closeted 'Take That' fan, I'm a REAL fan! :)

Regards
Kit

Weaver

Quote from: GTX on February 26, 2011, 12:32:02 PM

I assume you mean ones like this - see attached.

Regards,

Greg

That's the puppy! I couldn't remember who's plane it was, so it was a bit hard to search for the image. Cheers!  :thumbsup:
"Things need not have happened to be true. Tales and dreams are the shadow-truths that will endure when mere facts are dust and ashes, and forgot."
 - Morpheus in Sandman: A Midsummer Night's Dream, by Neil Gaiman

"I dunno, I'm making this up as I go."
 - Indiana Jones '

Jschmus

There was also Grumman's Nutcracker concept:

http://www.secretprojects.co.uk/forum/index.php/topic,10057.0.html



Not exactly a tail-sitter, but it was designed to be launched with the fuselage in a vertical position.
"Life isn't divided into genres. It's a horrifying, romantic, tragic, comical, science-fiction cowboy detective novel. You know, with a bit of pornography if you're lucky."-Alan Moore

McColm

That's it,
the Gruman picy.
As to most things in life. The Denist always says that it won't hurt, whilst you scream in agony. and if it was easy we'd be doing it all the time, which is why no navy has this method in service....yet!!