“Aurora Flight Sciences was awarded an $89.4 million to build its exotic Lightning Strike.
Aurora now has until September 2018 to build and fly a technology demonstrator of its design, which will use 24 small ducted fans.
But here’s the truly innovative part: those fans will be driven by individual electric motors running on three megawatts of electricity, the equivalent of 4,023 horsepower, produced by three generators.The generators will be powered by a single Rolls-Royce AE 1107 turbine engine, the same one used on the V-22 Osprey tiltrotor flown by the Marines and Air Force and, soon, by the Navy.
To meet DARPA’s requirements, the LightningStrike must weigh between 10,000 and 12,000 pounds, about the size of a UH-1Y Huey helicopter, cruise faster than 300 knots (345 mph), about 50 knots faster than the V-22, and hover far better than any helicopter in existence.
All four contestants in the competition offered unmanned…
View original post 135 more words