RPH preliminary design, trend analysis and initial analysis of the NPS Hummingbird.
Vandiver, James L.
Wood, E. Roberts
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The Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics at the Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) is expanding its helicopter research capabilities in order to facilitate present and future research demands. The rapidly changing needs have already out paced available assets. Therefore it was necessary to design and develop a new remotely piloted helicopter (RPH) that would meet present needs, NOTAR and HHC, and be flexible enough to meet future needs. The research efforts encompassed by this thesis are defining the present needs, investigating what type/size of RPH would fulfill these needs, procuring this asset, and analyzing its capabilities. Based on a defined payload, helicopter trends are analyzed to determine an estimate of the overall RPH size (gross weight) and engine size required. A preliminary design process validates these figures. Choosing to procure an RPH instead of building one, a detailed performance analysis is conducted on the main rotor system. This analysis includes blade vibration analysis, retreating blade stall analysis, and power required analysis. Modification of the RPH's main rotor hub, drive train, and landing gear are studied and recommendations presented. This research effort is a continuation of a long- term program to provide NPS with robust assets to support present and future rotorcraft research efforts.
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