Imagine flight without the use of wings or helicopter blades. The researchers at the Austrian company IAT21 did and they debuted a new breed of aircraft at the Paris Air Show – the D-Dalus. According to the D-Dalus website, a goal is to have an aircraft that can approach a scenario as quietly as possible, can remain in the air, rotate in any direction, fly fast as a jet, and may be easily repaired. With this new technology, IAT21 believes this type of aircraft is realizable.
The D-Dalus is a highly maneuverable aircraft that has the ability to launch vertically, hover in a fixed position, and rotate in any direction. All of this is made possible by a propulsion system that includes four sets of contra-rotating disks driven at the same rotational speed with blades that can individually be aligned. According to the D-Dalus website, this aircraft is still in the prototype phase. They have conducted flight tests within a laboratory to test the aircraft’s ability to transition between vertical and forward flights, and have announced that they are prepared to progress to free flight tests.
IAT21 sees D-Dalus as a potential response fleet to provide visual coverage of natural disasters, man-made disasters, monitoring illegal trafficking, and many more applications dangerous for humans. IAT21 has recently teamed up with UK-based Cranfield to continue to push for full flight certification.
For more information, visit the D-Dalus website at http://start.d-dalus.at/