Updated May 15th, 2024 at 17:50 IST

Airbus unveils innovative hybrid rotorcraft to enhance speed, response times

The Racer, a unique demonstrator model, combines traditional overhead rotor blades with two forward-facing propellers, aiming to blend stability and speed.

Reported by: Business Desk
Airbus Aircraft | Image:Airbus Aircraft
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Airbus Helicopters showcased an experimental hybrid aircraft on Wednesday, merging the features of a plane and a helicopter in a quest to enhance speed as competition intensifies to define the future of rotorcraft.

The Racer, a unique demonstrator model, combines traditional overhead rotor blades with two forward-facing propellers, aiming to blend stability and speed. This design promises to shorten response times for critical missions such as search-and-rescue operations.

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"There are missions where the quickest possible access to the zone is vital. We often talk about the 'golden hour'," Airbus Helicopters CEO Bruno Even told Reuters, highlighting the critical period when urgent medical attention is needed.

The Racer was set to make its debut flight at Airbus Helicopters' Marignane base outside Marseille, in front of 150 industry officials, politicians, and representatives from the European Union, which supported the project through its Clean Sky 2 initiative.

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This demonstration follows recent developments in the industry, including a cooperation agreement between Italy's Leonardo and U.S. manufacturer Bell to enhance existing tilt-rotor technology.

(With Reuters inputs)
 

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Published May 15th, 2024 at 17:50 IST