V-22 Osprey walkaround — first half
39° 59′ 30″ N / 75° 34′ 43″ W
Osprey — Bell Boeing’s aircraft which is the first tiltrotor entering production. Currently flown in the USAF as the CV-22 and the USMC as the MV-22 it is gaining a reputation for long range medivac and transport well beyond helicopter ranges as well as with greater speed.
Only two Ospreys are on public display and this one is the third of six V-22 Osprey prototypes which is located at the American Helicopter Museum. Transition from conventional to vertical flight is done by rotating the engine/proprotor combination at each wingtip. Rotation angles are 97.5º, allowing for reverse flight when needed. The proprotor is lightweight and each can engine drive both proprotors to prevent crashing should an engine be lost — though the low weight of the composite material proprotor design has the Osprey suffering when under autorotation (though it has a glide ration of 4.5:1). The propwash is extremely powerful and such that a minimal vertical separation of 25 feet between Ospreys in flight is mandatory as is not using the starboard fuselage door for paratrooper delivery (the rear ramp is instead used).
Exhaust heat from each 6150 hp turboshaft engine is massive and, like the F-35B Lightning II, requires improved flight decks for naval operations afloat. Less obvious advanced features are an airframe of 43% composite materials, folding proprotor blades and the wing pivoting 90º for stowage aboard ship.
Each Osprey is crewed by two pilots and two crew chiefs and typically carries 24 troops or 20,000 pounds internally/15,000 pounds externally. Range can be as far as 1011 miles at a cruising speed of 277 mph – with a get out-of-Dodge speed of 316 mph.
This Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey is displayed on the grounds of the American Helicopter Museum and the next post will finalize this walkaround 🙂