A team of students from the Singapore University of Technology and Design introduced the Transformable Hovering Rotorcraft (THOR). The THOR is based on a concept called the monocopter, it was structurally efficient – the whole frame is used to generate lift. The lack of counter-rotational systems meant the pilot and cargo would have needed to spin, making it impractical to ride in.
The design of THOR improves on the basic monocopter design involving a second wing – and it isn’t a monocopter anymore. The THOR’s opposing wings are mounted at right angles to each other and rotate into alignment when making the transition from helicopter-style hover to fixed-wing-style cruising. There are created a passive system to shuffle weight around based on flight mode. When the craft switches from hovering vehicle to fixed-wing aircraft, the centrifugal force involved in the switch is used to move the ballast into a position to keep the aircraft balanced.
THOR concept could be useful in a huge range of industrial environments sucha as agriculture, surveillance and payload delivery. The prototype can be seen hovering and transitioning to cruise mode in the video below.
Source: Singapore University of Technology and Design
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