Feeds

MIRACULOUS new AIRSHIP set to fly by 2013

Helium buoyancy issue solved at last?

Build a business case: developing custom apps

Where did the DARPA Walrus men go? Funnily enough ...

COSH, potentially, eliminates the compromises of the hybrid ships and delivers a true lighter-than-air hovership which can be heavier when it wants to be and so needs no water ballast when unloading, nor engine exhaust condensers, gaseous fuel etc.

Concept pic showing assembly of an Aeroscraft airship. Credit: Aeros

Perhaps the next-gen COSH will use a big drum-like storage tank, though?

But in fact it would seem that COSH isn't quite miraculous enough. In the case of a ship with a large payload, Pasternak admits that COSH wouldn't allow for unassisted lighter-than-air operation. In order for COSH to handle partially-fuelled unloading without ballasting (as in the Walrus troop-dropoff mission) the ship would need to have taken off in a very heavy condition to begin with.

Pasternak suggests that a vertical liftoff could still perhaps be achieved by having powerful vectored-thrust propulsion and adding still more lift by superheating the helium at takeoff, so causing it to temporarily expand and fill almost the whole envelope, furnishing extra lift. The hot gas and powerful thrusters would get the ship airborne: once the helium had cooled and the engines were throttled back to cruise power (and props rotated sideways to get the ship moving) their efforts would be replaced by dynamic lift from the hull flying along.

It's noteworthy, though, that high-powered gas turbines will be required to furnish the necessary takeoff thrust: Pasternak intends to deal with their poor fuel economy by switching to diesels in the cruise. (One might speculate that the turbines' power would also be needed to let the COSH compressors do their work in a reasonable amount of time during the unloading.)

Another sign that COSH may not be quite powerful enough for its task is that, according to AV Week, Pasternak has also done work on water-harvesting from engine exhaust in the style of the 1930s (or of some modern airship designs). Again, it seems that COSH needs every possible helping hand to let an Aeroscraft do what it says on the tin.

Even so, however, COSH is a genuinely new airship idea and it should please airship enthusiasts to hear that it will fly again soon.

And it's not just Pasternak and the Rapid Reaction Technology Office who still believe in the Aeroscraft and the "Walrus" heavy-lift mission. One notes that Aeros counts among its staff the former DARPA manager of the Walrus programme, and lists Tony Tether – head of DARPA before Walrus was axed by Congress – as an advisor. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Boffins attempt to prove the UNIVERSE IS JUST A HOLOGRAM
Is this the real life? Is this just fantasy?
Our LOHAN spaceplane ballocket Kickstarter climbs through £8000
Through 25 per cent but more is needed: Get your UNIQUE rewards!
China building SUPERSONIC SUBMARINE that travels in a BUBBLE
Shanghai to San Fran in two hours would be a trick, though
LOHAN tunes into ultra long range radio
And verily, Vultures shall speak status unto distant receivers
SpaceX prototype rocket EXPLODES over Texas. 'Tricky' biz, says Elon Musk
No injuries or near injuries. Flight stayed in designated area
Galileo, Galileo! Galileo, Galileo! Galileo fit to go. Magnifico
I'm just a poor boy, nobody loves me. But at least I can find my way with ESA GPS by 2017
Astronomers scramble for obs on new comet
Amateur gets fifth confirmed discovery
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.