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Coming to Terms: Rotor Redux

Coming to Terms: Rotor Redux

  • 04 Jan 2022 11:57 AM
  • 0

This series addresses the uses of terminology that drift toward becoming routine expressions or idioms — or already are — but are misleading or erroneous. Last issue’s “Coming to Terms” column on the definition of the word “rotor” generated a significant amount of discussion. The article was featured on the VFS eVTOL.news website and e-newsletter, with several thoughtful comments posted the first day, followed by emails to the author and Vertiflite.

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Coming to Terms: Rotor

Coming to Terms: Rotor

  • 27 Oct 2021 11:49 AM
  • 3

This series addresses the uses of terminology that drift toward becoming routine expressions or idioms — or already are — but are misleading or erroneous. This installment proposes a more rigorous approach to the terms for rotary-wing propulsors on vertical lift aircraft.

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Coming to Terms: Model Based

Coming to Terms: Model Based

  • 02 Sep 2021 11:22 AM
  • 0

This series addresses the uses of terminology that threaten to become routine expressions or idioms — or already are — but are misleading or erroneous. This installment clarifies what is a model-based method, and identifies distinctions between and complexities of various approaches.

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Coming to Terms: The Design

Coming to Terms: The Design

  • 29 Jun 2021 08:05 PM
  • 0

When someone talks about “The Design,” keep in mind that it’s a reference point… but it’s only the plan. 

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Coming to Terms: Aircraft Survivability is Revered — But What About Availability?

Coming to Terms: Aircraft Survivability is Revered — But What About Availability?

  • 01 Mar 2021 04:01 PM
  • 0

Most consider aircraft survivability only about reduction of aircraft radar signature, or radar cross section (RCS), through shaping and materials. Lowered RCS reduces the range at which a threat radar can detect, locate and identify a target, ideally reduced to a range so small that one can act with impunity — a significant military advantage.

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Coming to Terms: “Levels of Autonomy” is Unsound

Coming to Terms: “Levels of Autonomy” is Unsound

  • 21 Dec 2020 09:26 AM
  • 1

Autonomy, among the hottest topics in aviation today, lacks a clear and agreed-upon definition, though a consensus is emerging.

Multiple aviation “level of autonomy” scales have been put forward, such as Autonomy Levels for Unmanned Systems (ALFUS) by US government’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). But the adjective “autonomous” is binary: either an actor (person or system) performs a task autonomously or it has supervision.

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Coming to Terms: Let's Talk About

Coming to Terms: Let's Talk About "Flying Cars"

  • 03 Nov 2020 01:54 PM
  • 1

Everyone knows what a car is. The dominant configuration is a self-propelled, wheeled ground vehicle that carries a driver and one or more passengers, often built in large quantities on efficient production lines and usually made compliant with the regional rules of the road. Affordable, safe transportation that is there when we need it, that starts every time, is easy to own and easy to operate. The reliable family car.

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