September 13, 2006
Wind Tunnel Testing Completed on Bell Boeing Quad Tiltrotor
Langley AFB, Virginia, USA ( Bell Helicopters Press Release ) -
Wind tunnel testing for the Bell Boeing
Quad Tiltrotor model (QTR) was completed today at the NASA Langley Research
Center Transonic Dynamics Tunnel (TDT). Installation of the 1/5th scale
model into the sophisticated and unique TDT facility began June 27, 2006,
with test operations conducted by Bell, NASA and U.S. Army Research
The QTR tiltrotor concept is a four-engine C-130-sized aircraft with the
capability of taking off, hovering and landing like a conventional
helicopter as well as flying with the high speed and range of a fixed-wing
turboprop airplane by rotating its outboard nacelles from the vertical to
the horizontal position.
The model consists of powered forward and aft rotors, pylons,
nacelles and dynamically representative wings, representing a configuration
that would support a flying demonstrator.
Preliminary results of the QTR wind tunnel testing and QTR Joint Heavy Lift
(JHL) Program status will be the subject of a press conference scheduled in
conjunction with the Association of the U.S. Army national meeting at the
Washington (DC) Convention Center, Room 102A, from 8:00 am to 9:00 am on
Tuesday, October 10, 2006.
The fuselage of the QTR model used in the wind tunnel testing is 213 inches
long with rotors that measure 91 inches across. It is a "semi-span" model,
with only half of the aircraft represented. The 1/5th scale QTR
aero-elastic model has been designed to replicate the aerodynamics and
structural responses of a full-scale aircraft.
This complex testing investigated the interference effects of the forward
wing and rotor on the rear wing and rotor, along with substantiating the
aero-elastic stability of a rear wing having a 63 percent greater span than
the V-22 wing.
Last summer, the model's rear wing, rotor, pylon and nacelle were tested in
the wind tunnel to record baseline characteristics without the forward wing.
Results of both sets of tests will be correlated to similar wind tunnel and
flight tests of the V-22.
This Bell-funded test was conducted in parallel with Bell Boeing efforts
under the United States Army-led Joint Heavy Lift Concept Design and
Analysis (CDA) program and will provide key substantiating data to support
the ongoing conceptual design work.
Bell Boeing received a cost-share contract in September 2005 for an 18-month
study to evaluate QTRs sized to meet a variety of range, payload and
operating condition combinations. A key result of this study is a roadmap
for continuing company-funded activities in 2007, and a technology
development plan and cost estimate for proceeding into the next phases of
development beginning in 2008.
Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company, is an industry-leading
producer of commercial and military, manned and unmanned vertical lift
aircraft and the pioneer of the revolutionary tilt rotor aircraft. Globally
recognized for world-class customer service, innovation and superior
quality, Bell's global workforce serves customers flying Bell aircraft in
more than 120 countries.
Textron Inc. is a $10 billion multi-industry company operating in 33
countries with approximately 37,000 employees. The company leverages its
global network of aircraft, industrial and finance businesses to provide
customers with innovative solutions and services. Textron is known around
the world for its powerful brands such as Bell Helicopter, Cessna Aircraft,
Jacobsen, Kautex, Lycoming, E-Z-GO and Greenlee, among others.
A unit of The Boeing Company, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is one of
the world's largest space and defense businesses. Headquartered in St.
Louis, Boeing Integrated Defense Systems is a $31 billion business. It
provides network-centric system solutions to its global military,
government, and commercial customers. It is a leading provider of
intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance systems; the world's largest
military aircraft manufacturer; the world's largest satellite manufacturer
and a leading provider of space-based communications; the primary systems
integrator for U.S. missile defense and Department of Homeland Security;
NASA's largest contractor; and a global leader in sustainment and launch
news: Bell Boeing Wins JHL Contract ( Sep 19, 2005 )
news: Tiltrotor Airlift Technology for Army Transformation ( Jul 19, 2004 )
news: Osprey 's big cousin excites Pentagon ( Sep 26, 1999 )