R/C Floppy...whatever next?

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by The-Lord-Flasheart, Oct 7, 2011.

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  1. What Navy?
  2. Aren't most of them still sitting with Withams ?
  3. Would putting the Electronic sensors and equipment on the helicopter but then just having someone fly it around as it already has seats and controls be slightly too obvious?
  4. H&S. These things are shagged. (OK, they were shagged a long time ago) and it would be safer to fill them with gubbins and lob them into the ogsplosh.
  5. They are either airworthy or they are not. In either case, if they are not airworthy they shouldn't be flying, manned or unmanned.
  6. Define 'airworthy'.
  7. Pilots in the cockpit provide weight... which has to be supported. This is usually acheived by fuel, which means more weight, and more fuel to keep the fuel and the body in the air...

    Thus by removing the meat in the seat we've just increased the amount of weight in ordance and electronics that the heli can carry, and of course the fuel used will go further. Bearing in mind by removing the human cargo we've also ridded ourselves of seats, life support emergency rafts* and the like...

    And the heli can now be up 24/7 (engine servicing and fuelling not withstanding) because the 'pilot' can be sat in his lazy boy in the bridge, swaping out as needed. Just like the reapers.

    The fire scout can stay up for 8 hours, I would assume it could be back in the air quite quicly after a service and refuel, could a pilot be up as quick?

    * might be handy to leave rafts and such like on board when you think about it, these aircraft can't pick up survivors (i would think) so dropping liferafts until a manned heli or indeed the ship caught up would be a suggestion.
  8. WEll you would save the weight of the pilots and seats but then you have to put in all teh equipment to fly it remotely. This might be a bit lighter but not hugely so.

    The endurance of the aircraft will be limited by fuel tankage and AUW rather than how long a pilot can keep flying it without needing a wee. Remote control isn't going to change endurance much.

    You need someone to fly it from teh vessel in any csae so you still need a turn around
  9. You'd be surprised how light the equipment is, auto pilot with added bits. Think how much is actually just in there for the crew... seats, instruments, ermegecy equipment, refreshments, envirnonmental systems, radios and their ancils.

    To replace radios still needed, various servos to control te sytsems.

    going for a wee is't an issue. Plastic bags with sealing closures and a little sponge sort that out.

    Constant ops and fatigue during flight ops in heavy seas is.
  10. I was joking about needing a wee.......

    From figures I can find the Gazelle's endurance is about three hours. Doesn't seem a very suitable platform for a UAV at all.
  11. I figured that, but the 3 hour endurance could be longer on a UAV version. Besides, once we've done the Gazelle, we could use the process on another another airframe. R/C Typhoon anyone?
  12. Well if it does 3 hours on 350 kg of fuel then perhaps two 100kg pilots (including clothing and kit etc) would allow that to be extended to five hours. No saving on seats etc as the tanks and structure to support them would end up negating the saving. (If it worked in relation to CofG etc)
  13. I rather think the whole exercise is one based on QQ thinking

    "What can we buy cheap that we can sell to the MOD for a fortune? - Oh did you see all those surplus Gazelles on Top Gear the other week?"
  14. Current Gazelle has a MAUM of 1900kg. Thats total including crew and fuel. Dry weight (no fuel or crew) is typically 1100 kgs. Fuel tank currently holds 340 kgs (about 400 litres). This will typically give you about 2.5 hours endurance. Removal of Seats, instruments and other shit that the soft fleshy things require and you allow yourself 800kgs of spare payload. With that you could either stick in extra fuel tanks or mission payload. To 'R/C' it, you could bet on about 100kgs of wiggly amps and associated stuff. This will still give you approx 700kg of spare payload to either increase fuel or whatever mission kit you want. A cheap alternative if all you want is a ship based UAV. Will be interesting to see if they can overcome an auto take off or landing system as the Gazelle isn't the easiest aircraft to control in the hover on a rolling deck....

    2.5 hours still gives you an effective range of over 100 miles from the ship and allows 30 mins in the operating area. Not too bad at all. Double the endurance and it starts to look a viable option.

    Look at the MQ 8B Fire scout. Its based around the Schweizer 333.
    Empty weight of the MQ8 is 940kgs with a MAUM of 1430kgs and an endurance of 8 hours. (490kgs spare but its empty weight already has mission payload of over 150kgs) so all that 490kgs is what you could use for fuel.
    Sch333 Empty weight of 549kgs and a MAUM of 1156kgs (607 spare). Out of that 607kgs, you need to stuff at least one pilot in (90kg) as well as fuel.

    Obviously, I'm totally against using helis as UAVs!!!