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Rotorcraft Vision 2025

Rotorcraft Vision 2025


April 14, 2000

George Price
NASA Ames Research Center
650-604-4549
gprice@mail.arc.nasa.gov

Rotorcraft Vision 2025

Rotorcraft Vision Workshop

Conducted at NASA Headquarters on April 14, 2000

Purpose

Envision potential rotorcraft applications in 2025

Identify technology barriers

Identify innovative/radical/disruptive enabling technologies

Develop inputs to rotorcraft systems analysis

Participants from:

NASA Ames, Langley, Glenn

U.S. Army AFDD

Rotorcraft industry

Features of 2025 World Environment


Rotorcraft Vision 2025

High time value for travelers and goods


Demand for rapid, reliable transportation
Increasing urban/suburban land value
Demand for routine access to remote areas
Need for robust military systems
Opportunities for advanced technologies

2025 Rotorcraft Vision

Rotorcraft Vision 2025

A mix of vertical lift air vehicles operating


within a three-dimensional grid
Affordable, reliable, accessible, safe, and timely
system solutions
A wide variety of vehicles and subsystems to perform
specific tasks
Infrastructure to enable full 3-D operation from zero
altitude up

2025 Rotorcraft Missions


Rotorcraft Vision 2025

Point-to-point passenger and express service

Door-to-door personal transport

UAV surveillance & info-on-demand

Bulk or large cargo movement

Role of Rotorcraft in NASA Goals Structure

Rotorcraft Vision 2025

Goals (Pillars)
PRIMARY:
Revolutionize air
transportation mobility

Enable advanced
space transportation
SECONDARY:
Pioneer technical and
engineering innovation

TERTIARY:
Extend the benefit of
Enterprise investments

Objectives

Analysis
Approach

Safety; Environment;
Throughput;
Door-to-Door Speed

Systems Analysis;
Expert Assessment

Access to Space;
In-Space Transportation

Systems Analysis;
Expert Assessment

Technology Innovation;
Revolutionize the
Engineering Culture
and Tools

Expert assessment;
Systems Analysis

Technology
Commercialization

Market Analysis;
Expert Assessment

Goal: Revolutionize Air Transportation Mobility

Rotorcraft Vision 2025

Objective

Rotorcraft Impact

Safety

- Equivalent to airline operations

Environment

- Noise level below annoyance threshold


- Less congestion and pollution from ground vehicles
- Less acreage devoted to transportation

Throughput

- Increased capacity of transportation system


- More efficient use of fixed-wing airliners and hubs

Door-to-Door
Speed

- True door-to-door transport


- No ground delays
- Universal access to air transportation

Only vertical lift vehicles can take full


advantage of the 3-D grid and not be
tied to a need for large acreage on
the ground, therefore

only vertical lift vehicles


can truly meet NASAs
goal to revolutionize air
transportation mobility

Vision 2025 Barriers & Key Attributes


Vehicle
Efficiency
(hover,
cruise,
structural)

Cruise
Speed

Cost per Seat-Mile


or Ton-Mile

BARRIERS

Rotorcraft Vision 2025

ATTRIBUTES

Community
Acceptance

External
Noise

AllVibration &
Design for
Weather
Intelligent
Internal
Reliability Operability
Automation
Noise
& Safety
(icing, IFR,
etc.)

Reliable AllWeather Service

Perceived Safety

Passenger
Comfort

Piloting Skill
Required
Operation Within
3-D Grid

X Primary influence
X

Secondary influence

2025 Attributes Required


Rotorcraft Vision 2025

ATTRIBUTE

Vehicle Efficiency

Cruise Speed
External Noise

CURRENT LEVEL

2025 REQUIREMENT

Figure of Merit = 0.78

0.9

Vehicle L/D = 7 at Vcruise

12 at Vcruise

EW Fraction = .45 (helo) - .55 (tiltrotor)

.4 - .5

Helicopter = 170 kts

200 kts

Tiltrotor = 250 kts

350 - 400 kts

(TBD) dB

Below annoyance threshold

Vibration & Internal Noise .05g vibration


Intelligent Automation

Reliability & Safety

All-Weather Operability

Pilot aiding

Imperceptible

Autonomous flight (UAV)

Fully autonomous, ultra-safe, fault


tolerant mission execution & replan

(TBD) MTBMA

(TBD)

(TBD)

Equivalent to fixed-wing airliners

IFR-capable

Fully autonomous zero-zero

Limited icing capability

Full icing capability

Bio-Analogous Distributed Systems

Rotorcraft Vision 2025

Distributed sensors, processors, and actuation


devices tailor drag and lift, counter vibration,
diagnose faults, and implement corrective action
Active aerodynamic
controls

Intelligent
operator
interface

Self-monitoring,
adaptive, reconfigurable,
self-healing systems

Distributed
sensors,
processors,
and actuation
devices

Rotorcraft Vision 2025

Advanced Rotor/Drive System Concept


Continuous control of shape and airflow
achieves near-ideal performance

Smart material morphing


blade geometry

Active blowing and


boundary layer modification

Active vibration and


noise control

Low-noise geometry

Swashplate-less
control

Reverse velocity
airfoils

Super-safe rotor
and drive shaft

Variable speed drive system

Rotorcraft Vision 2025

Personal Transport Rotorcraft


Vertical flight or Extremely Short Takeoff enables
true
door-to-door mobility
Environmentally
friendly
Low-noise

rotor

Economical
Low-cost

construction
Affordable

propulsion
system

Safe and easy to operate


Auto-Trim Rotor
Smart autonomous
self-reconfigurable
control system
Super-safe health &
usage monitoring
and advanced
diagnostics

Advanced Vehicle Configurations

Rotorcraft Vision 2025

High speed enhances productivity of


piloted and uninhabited rotorcraft

Quad Tilt Rotor

Folding Prop-Rotor

Ducted Coaxial Rotor

Canard Rotor / Wing

Candidate Innovative Technologies


Applications of nano, micromechanical, and microfluidic technologies
Damage tolerant design combined with multiple load paths for single point components
and sensors and for near real time fault detection (e.g., nanotubes)
Actuation using multiple micromechanical devices to provide redundancy and fault tolerance

Rotorcraft Vision 2025

Advanced concepts for reliable and efficient de-icing

Intelligent rotorcraft systems


Distributed intelligence and actuation devices (bio-analogy)
Advanced prognostics, self-reconfiguration and repair, and adaptive self-monitoring/
self-healing control and actuation systems
Reconfigurable vehicle elements (folding or retractable rotors, tilt mechanisms, etc.)
Variable-speed drive train
Synthetic environment and synthetic vision for all-weather flight

Integrated ideal rotor


Including active controls, smart materials, on-blade intelligence, advanced actuators

Intelligent design, analysis, and optimization


Total-system large scale multidisciplinary optimization and integrated design tools
Advanced concepts for high-speed rotorcraft configurations
Spectrum of physics-based models to enable performance prediction and design for
advanced configurations

Impact of Innovative Technologies

ATTRIBUTES

Rotorcraft Vision 2025

INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGIES
Nano and M icro
Technologies

Intelligent Rotorcraft
Systems

Integrated Ideal Rotor

Intelligent Design

Vehicle Efficiency

Cruise Speed

External Noise

Vibration & Internal


Noise

Intelligent Automation

Design for Reliability


& Safety

All-Weather
Operability

X Primary influence
X

Secondary influence

x
x

Rotorcraft Vision 2025

Where Do We Go
From Here?

Role of Systems Analysis


Rotorcraft Vision 2025

CandidateSystemConcepts

Candidate
Technologies

sensitivities

characteristics

characteristics

requirements

SystemsAnalysis
sensitivitie
s

Assessments of Concepts
and Technologies

impacts

Mission
Attributes

Missions-to-Technologies Matrices
ATTRIBUTES
Vehicle
Efficiency
(hover,
cruise,
structure)

Cruise
Speed

External
Noise

Vibration &
Internal
Noise

Intelligent
Automation

Design for
Reliability &
Safety

All-Weather
Operability
(icing, IFR,
etc.)

MISSIONS

Personal
Transport

Passenger
& Express

UAV

SYSTEM CONCEPTS

Vehicle Efficiency
(hover, cruise, structure)
Cruise Speed
External Noise
Vibration & Internal Noise
Intelligent Automation
Design for Reliability & Safety

TECHNOLOGIES

All-Weather Operability
(icing, IFR, etc.)

SYSTEM CONCEPTS

ATTRIBUTES

Rotorcraft Vision 2025

Cargo

Technology-Mission-Goals Linkages
Goal 1

Rotorcraft Vision 2025

Mission 1

Attribute 1

Concept 1

Technology 1

Goal 2

Mission 2

Attribute 2

Concept 2

Technology 2

Goal 3

Mission 3

Attribute 3

Concept 3

Mission 4

Attribute 4

Concept 3

Technology 3

Concept 4

Technology 4

Technology 5

Rotorcraft Vision 2025

Event Schedule
Conduct Vision 2025 Workshop

April 14, 2000

Conduct Systems Analysis Workshop

May 5, 2000

Establish Systems Analysis Capability

December 31, 2000

Assess Candidate Concepts & Technologies


Formulate Innovative Research Program

January 31, 2001


March 31, 2001