Bell-Boeing V-22 Osprey

The V-22 Osprey is the first aircraft specifically designed to meet the needs of all four US armed services. Cleverly
combining the attributes of both helicopter and aeroplane, the aircraft takes off and lands like a helicopter using its tilting “proprotors” but, once airborne, its engine nacelles can be rotated to convert it to a turboprop airplane.
Twice as fast as a helicopter with a much longer range, it has multi-mission capability ranging from combat support to medevac. Developed as a joint project by Bell Helicopter Textron and Boeing’s Helicopters Division, the V-22 is based on the XV-15 tiltwing aircraft tested by Bell in the late 1970s. It has a conventional fuselage, largely built from composites, with a ventral loading ramp at the rear. Mounted on top of tbe fuselage, the wing has a complex flap/aileron system, and swivelling pods at the wingtips house the two Allison turbines driving 38ft- diameter
“proprotors”. All critical systems are t riple-redundant, some being armoured or designed to withstand ballistic impact.
Due to its radical design, the V-22 programme has been plagued by controversy, various technical difficulties, spiralling costs, and even cancellation threats. The Osprey is currently scheduled to enter front-line service in Iraq with the US Marines in 2007.