A recent patent application of Airbus Helicopters indicates a continued focus on novel architecture, including tail rotor-less configurations, which are appearing on its future rotorcraft concept.
The helicopter tail rotor is used to balance the counter-torque. Current helicopters seen without a tail rotor on the surface, such as the KA-32 and McDonnell Douglas MD-902, are using different technologies to replace the traditional tail rotor.
By eliminating the need for a tail rotor and related drive shaft, Airbus says it has reduced weight and complexity and has been able to completely reconfigure the tail of the helicopter, opening up a space that was previously unavailable.
The company also says that removing the tail rotor can reduce fuel consumption.
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