May 4, 2010
What springs to mind when thinking of the Humvee? Its sleek, aerodynamic lines? Well, no. But that didn’t stop DARPA from announcing (in a 58-page proposal) its plans for combining an SUV-type ground vehicle with Vertical Take Off and Landing (VTOL) capabilities. In other words, a flying Humvee.
DARPA’s “desirable field design considerations” (found at FastCompany.com) require a payload capability of 1,000; the ability to carry 4 troops and their gear; maximum dimensions of 8.5 feet wide, by 9 feet high, by 30 feet long; and that the vehicle be capable of VTOL. Added perks would include automated takeoff and landing, and the ability to make use of standard military fuel, primarily JP-8.
The UK Register reports that a prototype of the “Transformer TX” is expected by 2015, at a cost of no more than $43 million.
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