The CarterCopter Technology Demonstrator
The CarterCopter has been designed and developed more for research into the creation of a high speed helicopter than a roadable aircraft,
but it does have features which make it of interest in the roadable catagory. With the wings removed and the rotor stowed along the
longitudinal axis of the machine, it has a width of eight and one-half feet, which is the maximum allowable width of a roadable aircraft.
If it were desired to convert the machine into a roadable, it would be necessary to modify the landing gear for road use, while the thrust of the engine
could probably be used to propel the vehicle on land. Such a roadable would certainly have high performance in flight mode.
Carter Aviation Technologies is a research and development company. Their primary focus
is the slowed-rotor compound aircraft, which is a VTOL aircraft that uses the rotor for takeoff and landing, and a small,
efficient wing for high speed flight. Speeds up to 500 mph are anticipated, to be obtained with much less complexity than tilt-rotor or other
vectored thrust features. They have successfully demonstrated the slowed rotor concept with the CarterCopter Technology Demonstrator (CCTD),
the first and only aircraft to reach "mu-1".
"Mu" is pronounced "mew" and is commonly used to represent a ratio in rotorcraft engineering,
sometimes called the "rotor tip advance ratio". "Mu" is the ratio of the forward speed of the aircraft to the rotor tip speed relative
to the aircraft. Achieving "Mu-1" is a significant accomplishment in the creation of a high speed helicopter.
Photographs are copyright Carter Aviation Technologies and used with permission.
Company web address is -
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"Roadable Times" Features and Departments
Posted December 2007