Boeing CV-22B Osprey, USAF
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The Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey is an American multi-mission, tiltrotor military aircraft with both vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL), and short takeoff and landing (STOL) capabilities. It is designed to combine the functionality of a conventional helicopter with the long-range, high-speed cruise performance of a turboprop aircraft.
The failure of Operation Eagle Claw during the Iran hostage crisis in 1980 underscored the requirement for a new long-range, high-speed, vertical-takeoff aircraft for the United States Department of Defense. In response, the Joint-service Vertical take-off/landing Experimental (JVX) aircraft program started in 1981. A partnership between Bell Helicopter and Boeing Helicopters was awarded a development contract in 1983 for the V-22 tiltrotor aircraft. The Bell Boeing team jointly produce the aircraft. The V-22 first flew in 1989, and began flight testing and design alterations; the complexity and difficulties of being the first tiltrotor for military service led to many years of development.
The United States Marine Corps began crew training for the Osprey in 2000, and fielded it in 2007; it supplemented and then replaced their Boeing Vertol CH-46 Sea Knights. The Osprey's other operator, the U.S. Air Force, fielded their version of the tiltrotor in 2009. Since entering service with the U.S. Marine Corps and Air Force, the Osprey has been deployed in transportation and medevac operations over Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya and Kuwait.
Either engine can power both proprotors through the wing driveshaft. However, the V-22 is generally not capable of hovering on one engine. If a proprotor gearbox fails, that proprotor cannot be feathered, and both engines must be stopped before an emergency landing. The aircraft's autorotation characteristics are poor partly because the rotors have low inertia.
The V-22 has a maximum rotor downwash speed above 80 knots, more than the 64 knots lower limit of a hurricane. The rotorwash usually prevents usage of the starboard door in hover, instead the rear ramp is used for rappelling and hoisting. Boeing has stated the V-22 design loses 10 percent of its vertical lift over a tiltwing design when operating in helicopter mode because of airflow resistance due to the wings, but that the tiltrotor design has better short takeoff and landing performance. A V-22 must maintain at least 25 ft (7.6 m) of vertical separation between each other to avoid their rotor wake, which can cause turbulence and potentially lead to a loss of control
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