Personal Aircraft Carrier

Discussion in 'Boat Design' started by Toot, Sep 15, 2006.

  1. FAST FRED
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    Location: Conn in summers , Ortona FL in winter , with big d

    FAST FRED Senior Member

    The catch is LANDING, unless you're planning on the airplane making a one-way trip.


    In the late 50's the USN decided that to have the ability to deliver a Nuke from a carrier , a plan was created.

    A P2V (SP2H) would load the bomb , and accelerate off the carrier deck with the aid of 8 JATO rockets. They actually launched a few with dummy weigt bombs to prove the concept.

    AS the carrier can not accept a P2 for landing , so the "procedure" was to ditch along side the carrier , if a shore station was out of range from the target.

    Doesn't sound like a goods deal to me!

    FF
     
  2. Steve in SoCal
    Joined: May 2007
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    Steve in SoCal Junior Member

    Arresting gear is hard on any aircraft and tying an airplane down to winch it in is a hard idea to grasp. The helo could use a devise like that used for external loads where the cable could be blown if something went amiss but the airplane would be precariously at low speed and power. Airplanes and helicopters in ground effects have more lift and can do things that they can't do above that height, a disadvantage for the airplane if it had to miss the landing for any reason.

    One of the pit falls of landing a fixed wing aircraft on a boat is that the airplane should be able to miss the approach if all the numbers don't add up and with that in mind hauling the airplane aboard is not an ideal. The speed of the boat can have a great influence on what could work because IF you could get a boat up to speed the airplane would be at a low relative speed to the boat. A naval carrier that can make fifty knots or more is out of the question for us with out glow in the dark power plants! Almost any single engine airplane could land on a deck with a fifty knot head wind in a few hundred feet or less.

    Taking a boat that is 250 feet for example with a displacement speed of around 20 knots you could land a number of fixed wing aircraft any STOL would be at or near zero speed and many light airplanes that are not STOL but have low stall speeds say below 45 Knots at VSO. The more challenging case is an airplane with a VSO near the single engine certified maximum of 61 knots or multi engine aircraft. The STOL airplanes could work but a few aspects of their design limit their usefulness. The speed is generally around that of a turbine helicopter and while they do offer more range it is not much greater than the helo and the boat doesn't have to be designed around landing airplanes. If you have the resources to build a flat top you most likely have the resources to afford a turbine helicopter anyway. While anything is possible is this practical? If you want your own naval air arm it is; if you just want a way off the boat by air a chopper is much more practical.

    Steve
     
  3. joz
    Joined: Jul 2002
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    joz Senior Member

    Intersting topic, just woundering would a yacht designer or naval architect be able to design aircraft for the carrier that he/she is designing? or would he/she collate info in types of aircraft or rotorcraft that best suit the carrier and put forward to his/her client?
     
  4. RatliffFranklin

    RatliffFranklin Previous Member

    Winching

    That could work.
     
  5. kc135delta
    Joined: Jun 2006
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    kc135delta Junior Member

    interesting approach, so if we can get a boat that will do 20knts and a stol plane to match it we can essentially land a plane on a helipad.

    The question is how to take off again?
     
  6. Steve in SoCal
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    Steve in SoCal Junior Member

    The landing area wouldn't be quite like a helipad, the airplane still needs to transition from flying to wheels stopped. I would say that before you can nail down a size you would have to do "carrier qualifying" of the airplane. The comfort factor should be about double what is repeatable. If the airplane can stay within 10' of centerline and 25' of the wheels down mark double these figures. So a footprint for a runway could be as little a beam by the distance to stop from the landing point.

    The take off would be a bit more involved. While the relative wind would be a great help you need to insure that the airplane is at 1.3 VSO by the time it leaves the deck. If VSO is 20knots then a minimum safe speed is 26 knots to launch. Most small airplanes don't build speed from a dead stop well, a bungee cord catapult could work. With enough prevailing wind you could launch un-assisted from a hundred feet or so. With out any aide to launch you may need 250' or more. All the numbers would have to be developed by actual trials in the airplane at sea level or close to it. The variables are too close to extrapolate from other sources and each plane would have to be tested to ensure its performance meet the goals.

    Steve
     
  7. RatliffFranklin

    RatliffFranklin Previous Member

    Airspeed

    You're confusing landing on a fixed runway with landing on a runway that is itself moving as fast as the airplane. You're also not taking into account that we're not talking about airplanes with the speed differential between naval jet aircraft and their carriers.

    All an airplane cares about is airspeed over the wings. When the runway is a boat traveling at 20 plus knots there is no transition from flying to wheels stopped, only a change in altitude, because the airplane is still flying when it is sitting on the deck.

    The trick when taking off would be when and how much power to apply so that the airplane doesn't trail the boat and snag its propeller on the winch cable.
     
  8. RatliffFranklin

    RatliffFranklin Previous Member

    Airplane Design

    Although a winched to the deck landing could be done with existing STOL planes, a safer approach might be a custom design using a ducted pusher propeller.
     
  9. Steve in SoCal
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    Steve in SoCal Junior Member

    Matching boat speed to air speed is going to be difficult, my thoughts are with an airplane slightly above the speed of the boat. Tying a plane to a boat an reeling it in is dangerous and too many variables exist to mitigate the danger. Wind gust, line fouling, weathervaning, and disruption of the equilibrium of lift/ thrust and drag. An airplane with a propeller on its nose can't be tied to a line in the one area where the line could work. A pusher design may work but that is counter-intuitive for a STOL design.

    The idea that an airplane can just levitate down on the deck is not only possible but a Cub does it at air shows all the time. However; that Cub and the moving platform it lands on are both at much higher speeds and have far better maneuverability than a big boat and an airplane on the ragged edge of a stall. The platform also has the ability to speed up and slow down with a high degree of precision.

    The problem is under ideal conditions these ideas may work, under less than ideal conditions these same ideas can be fatal. The ideal can change for the worse without notice and leave the airplane in an unrecoverable situation.

    The basic principal of any idea must take into consideration the worst case not the best case. When an airplane is transitioning from flying to landing a few things happen. An airplane a VSO out of ground effects stalls, an airplane in ground effects at the same speed flys. The speed of the boat has to allow the airplane to stop flying and that will be lower than the speed of the airplane on approach no matter what. If the relative speed(boat speed) is at or near VSO out of ground effects the airplane will never stop flying on its own. Two guys could grab the struts and hold it down but that is not a great idea either.

    Steve
     
  10. RatliffFranklin

    RatliffFranklin Previous Member

    Vtol

    Well, if someone can afford the yacht they can also afford the turbine helicopter to go with it.
     
  11. kc135delta
    Joined: Jun 2006
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    kc135delta Junior Member

    Apparently after alittle research it's not nearly as difficult as you guys make it out to be. The army converted LST's in world war 2 to mini aircraft carriers to provide recon for shelling on the shore and light attack with browning 30 cals and infantry bazookas under the wings. So I guess their was once Army Air corps naval aviators???

    [​IMG]

    vietnam; no arresting hooks

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  12. Brasstom
    Joined: Jun 2005
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    Brasstom Dedicated Boat Dreamer

    Good old topics revived!

    Nothing like replying to a thread that's been quiet nearly a year...fun!

    Actually, Delta, the entire "Air Force" used to be the "Army Air Corps". Before and during WWII there was no separate Air Force and, except for Navy Planes, all war planes belonged to the US Army. An Army brat myself, I call those the good old days! ;-)

    I love this idea! While it lacks a lot of "practicality"... who cares! So does nearly every beautiful yacht out there! But what I'm surprised at is that so few of you discussed Bruce Hector's idea. I only saw one mention on this forum!

    http://www.brucesboats.com/page3.html

    Bruce's idea of using the Zenith Ch-701 not only provides the perfect plane for the job (INCREDIBLY short take-off runs!) but also reduces the cost of that part of it. Using the simple sharpie design of a scaled up Wyoming reduces the overall cost and complexity, and gives you pretty much the ideal shape for the purpose.

    There are lots of imperfections, of course. But I think it comes as close to perfectly matching the "Personal Aircraft Carrier" concept as any idea discussed so far... and he didn't even participate, haha!

    Of course the real winning point of his concept is that Phil Bolger even lauded the idea... now THAT's credibility!

    Here's hoping we revive the topic!
     
  13. Greenseas2
    Joined: Mar 2006
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    Greenseas2 Senior Member

    Slepcev Storch

    Several companies are making 2/3 scale models of the German Fiesler Storch. Stall speed.....16 knots. Landing distance 95 feet with two onboard.
     
  14. Hotel Lima
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    Hotel Lima Junior Member

    Could this actually be made useful? Has Anyone ever seen those massive yacht escort ships? They are getting in the 250'+ range, could a STOL aircraft large enough to fill a COD (carrier on board delivery) role fit? Something that could deliver guests out to a cruising yacht and escort ship group at sea or supplies such as exotic foods? Helicopters are really limited to only a couple hours max overwater - 250miles is pushing it in civilian applications.

    These yacht escourt ships or also called "shadows" are like big industrial toy boxes for mega yachts.

    EDIT: images

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    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    seems like potential, flight deck from bow to stern with a hangar deck below and you have some serious room
     

  15. FAST FRED
    Joined: Oct 2002
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    Location: Conn in summers , Ortona FL in winter , with big d

    FAST FRED Senior Member

    The carrier IDEA is fine , you simply have to look at a far more useful system of winged flight.

    The Gyrocopter setup easily transitions from forward flight to full stop with the loss of (rotor) airspeed happening only after the aircraft is on the deck.

    No worry's about stalling .

    No catching a wire with a tail hook, no sudden deceleration to wake grandmother.

    These can be full cabin 2 to 10+ person aircraft , and only require a bit of training for a std fixed wing pilot , they have 1/000 the risk,cost and complexity of a Helicopter.

    The newest Pre- Rotor systems get them off with minor airspeed , the yacht steaming into the wind might do.

    Unfortunatly they are not as efficient at long cruising in terms of miles/gallons but for only 250 miles , no big deal.



    FF
     
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