Those UK readers living close to rapid prototyping firm 3T RPD Ltd's Newbury headquarters are invited to open their windows and listen for a distant whirring sound as our Low Orbit Helium Assisted Navigator (LOHAN) Vulture 2 spaceplane is meticulously hewn from the living nylon. Last week, the crack team of Southampton Uni …
I've been following LOHAN since the naming debate and am honestly excited to see Vulture2 launch (especially on my home turf (air?)). I shall raise a Tinto to David Cooper, Chris Dodd and Amrith Surendra in my local.
re. .. 'hewn'
It's not being hewn, it's being precision laser sintered - 'plintered'.
Nice to see El Reg at the leading edge of British Aerospace but in the best traditions of British Aviation visionaries, where is the garden shed?
Don't you worry, there's plenty of sheddery on this project.
A trans-national process, that's how the pros do it.....
Surely they should now be shipped to Toulouse, along with all the other components you have scattered around Europe, for the final construction?
Re: A trans-national process, that's how the pros do it.....
In fact, that's exactly what's happening. The plane will be transported by air to Spain in bits, and there are components winging their way from the US to our shed, where our team of experts has the kettle in anticipation...
Re: Here's one we printed earlier...
Not very aerodynamic, to be sure, but it's a lovely colour.
Has there been simulation testing?
It would be a big shame to print this wicked looking beasty up, assemble it and then discover it doesn't fly...
This project has been a long, strange trip. I sketched up the first concept drawing you published over two years ago… this project has expanded its vast orbs of amazing to truly impressive scale!
Yes, I remember your input. It's been a long, strange journey indeed.
Messrs Cooper, Dodd and Surendra.
I make that 300%
Re: Messrs Cooper, Dodd and Surendra.
Let's see what percentage it eventually pans out at.
You ought to put an accelerometer on it so you can stream g-loading data back as it flies, and ride along in an appropriate motion platform...
Two pints coming up!
Looks like great work by the team.
Let's see how well LOHAN performs (pun intended) !
Suggest a test flight?
Enough bungee cord to get it up a couple of hundred feet at least, with some kind of RC receiver (perhaps in place of the rocket motor, plus ballast for CoG adjustments) so that someone can emergency land the thing if the autopilot has a spasm. That or get another powered RC plane to tow it up, whatever's easiest and most feasible.
Wouldn't be good to only find out that your autopilot has some showstopping bugs at 70,000 feet.
Is it just me...
...or does this design remind anyone else here of an old WWII-era German jet fighter project -- one of many which never flew...
Re: Is it just me...
looks a bit like some of Armstrong Whitworth's work on aeroclinic wings in the late 1940s