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A gyroplane, also known as a gyrocopter or autogyro, is a type of rotorcraft that uses an unpowered rotor in free autorotation to develop lift. Forward thrust is provided independently, by an engine-driven propeller.

Why a Gyroplane?

These flying machines have been gaining popularity around the world since the first gyroplane took to the skies over Spain almost 100 years ago.

The gyroplane is characterized by a freely spinning rotor, which rotates due to air passing through the rotor from below. The downward component of the total aerodynamic response of the rotor gives lift to the vehicle, keeping it in the air, a state of flight called autorotation.

The freely rotating rotor blades are angled so that not only do they produce lift, but the angle of the blades causes the lift to accelerate the speed of the blades until the rotor is spinning at a steady speed with balanced drag and thrust forces. Unlike a helicopter, the gyroplane rotor is not coupled to the engine during flight; If the engine fails, the rotor remains in auto rotation (spontaneous rotation) at all times, which always ensures that the lift force remains in flight. It is the autorotation in case of an engine failure that allows the apparatus to slowly lose altitude while smoothly descending and the pilot has an opportunity to make a controlled landing. The centrifugal effect of the rotor ensures a very smooth and stable gyroplane flight, minimizing the effects of turbulence. Like no other rotorcraft, the gyroplane can be flown in strong winds and adverse weather conditions and can be used virtually year round.

A separate push propeller provides direct thrust and serves as the drive for the flying machine.

Gyroplane Advantages

The gyroplane is much cheaper than light aircraft and helicopters, including operation.

The gyroplane is easier to control than airplanes and helicopters.

One of the safest flying machines, which is due to the following features:

  • It is not prone to spinning;
  • Is able to make a soft landing with a nonfunctioning engine; minimum requirements for the site for takeoff and landing;
  • Much less sensitive to thermal air currents (compared to hang gliders and paragliders);
  • Less sensitive to turbulence (compared to an airplane);
  • Easier to control and maintain (compared to a helicopter).