The Pentagon "in the first approximation," approved the draft military armored vehicles with vertical take-off and set deadlines for the demonstration of functional prototypes. Machines continue to develop two teams, whose approaches to the problem is quite different.
According to Aviation Week, a research agency DARPA consider "acceptable" two designs of flying cars, which was developed by Lockheed Martin (on a par with the company Piasecki Aircraft) and the corporation AAI.
Thus, the program Transformer (TX), informally referred to as' flying Humvee », entered its second phase.This means moving from words to action - namely, the construction of demonstration prototypes.
AAI relies on the symbiosis of airplane wings and helicopter rotor. Both have vertosamoleta formed.
Cars should be ready in 2012. After examining apparatus, DARPA will choose one of two teams, which in the third phase of the program in 2015, will roll out a real flying demonstrator TX.
«Flying Humvee» of the corporation Lockheed Martin - the two screws in the ring, located on the wing with adjustable angle of attack and can be rotated during movement on the ground.
As a result, the Americans should have something unimaginable. It will be a four-SUV, as opposed to small-arms fire and is capable of rapidly (almost 60 seconds) to transform into an aircraft, ready for a vertical takeoff and landing. Moreover, the driver can not demand the skills pilot, and the car should act as a drone.
DARPA hopes that the flying armored car would cost about $ 1 million. For comparison: the price of regular Humvee - approximately $ 400 thousand, a light helicopter - $ 4 million /
Note that in the British Army "flying jeep" was in the 1940s, while the U.S. military experiments with the «flying jeeps» occurred in the 1950s and 1960s.