In 2017, the American company Egan Airships presented InterDrone prototype of a new type of aircraft. It could be called “plump” (plimp — a combination of two English words meaning “airplane” and “airship”), but the authors of a startup have reserved that word as a trademark and demand to use it as an adjective. In fact it is soft airship with rigid wings, a power unit of the tiltrotor helicopter and method of takeoff and landing.

The idea of such a flying unit came up with James Egan in childhood, when he flew balloons and model aircraft plywood. If you attach a big and easy bowl to the rigid chassis of the aircraft, the latter will always be a soft schedule, and the risk of a hard landing with the crash are excluded. This formed the basis of the “Blinov” – after successful prototype testing, the company has already developed a commercial model and now needs investors for its construction.

Blimp uses helium to obtain lift force, but only by 50 %. The rest of the work is done by engines – at launch, they are oriented vertically, the machine does not need a running start to lift. Then the pilot puts the console in a horizontal position, by analogy with the Osprey convertiplanes Bell, and the craft flies like a plane. When landing, the process is reversed, and the construction of the machine insures her from the hard impact with the ground.

The current model J can haul a ton of cargo and take it to a distance of 420 km in 3 hours. Or fly in empty 2100 km, acting as mobile communications repeater or a Billboard. This car has lower fuel consumption than planes and helicopters, and it is managed much better in bad weather than the airship. The scope of plinov too extensive, and the construction of one instance been estimated at $4 million.

Source — Live Science