Hovercraft technology – the ideal match for the Hybrid Airship (Video)

Hovercraft can travel over land, water and ice. The technology behind the Hybrid Airship, the cargo-hauling ship of the skies, allows this hybrid craft to travel virtually anywhere.What is a hovercraft? It’s part boat, part airplane and part helicopter. While it may look a bit odd, how it works is quite simple. It’s an amphibious vehicle that travels on a cushion of air created by a downward blast. Hovercraft use air to balance their weight, allowing the craft to operate efficiently. Hovercraft can also operate across nearly any terrain, including land, water and ice.

It’s this characteristic that makes hovercraft technology the ideal match for the Hybrid Airship, the cargo-hauling ship of the skies, enabling the airship to access remote locations around the world.

From carrying heavy equipment to isolated regions of Alaska, to serving as a flying clinic for disaster-relief efforts, there is almost no cargo mission this ship can’t perform. This is due to the fact that the airship can land nearly anywhere. What gives the Hybrid Airship this capability? The air cushion landing system (ACLS).

The ACLS looks like giant inflatable doughnuts on the bottom of a large blimp, and it makes the challenge of accessing remote regions around the globe a thing of the past. Lockheed Martin Skunk Works® developed an ACLS that blends hovercraft technology with our airship design.

“One of the biggest challenges to traditional cargo airship operations is how and where you park the airship,” said hybrid design program manager, Dr. Bob Boyd. “It’s very expensive and time consuming to develop infrastructure in remote areas around the world. The ACLS allows the Hybrid Airship to access these isolated regions without needing to build any runway or roads.”


Read more

Source: uasvision.com