Monday, September 14, 2009

X-Hawk VTOL - Bell Helicopter - Urban Aeronautics - Israel


Featured in a recent edition of Aviation News, Israeli company Urban Aeronautics (in collaboration with Bell Helicopter, a Textron Inc subsidiary) unveiled their forthcoming modular UAV "Mule" at the Paris Air Show.

•‘Rotorless’ design eliminates the serious safety hazards associated with helicopter rotors and permits secure access to any location.
•Arrival time is guaranteed and predictably speedy with effectively zero vulnerability to contingencies such as traffic or other access obstacles.
•The capability to sustain a safe, stable hover adjacent to a window, wall or slope or to land safely in a congested space allows access and evacuation from virtually any location without the use of ladders or hoists.
•X-Hawk is significantly quieter than any helicopter, an important consideration with regard to urban environments.

X-Hawk is basically a 'covered rotor' Vertical Take Off & Landing aircraft similar to the "Flying Jeeps" that were built and flown by the Piasecki Company and the U.S. Army and Navy in the early 60's with a funky new modular design and additional control technology that negates tilt in flight.

You notice the pilot always sits in the same place but X-Hawk's modular design could be extended to many other useful functions; gun turret, SWAT team, pizza delivery or barrels of boiling oil.

Hope there's not a Copyright issue here because the following clip uses Ridley Scott's film Blade Runner incidental music in its small-scale prototype demo Panda unmanned Fancraft™. Talk about stuffing a tyrannical future in mankind's face. Get some A.I. on that thing and you've got yourself a floating robot assassin - even without A.I. you can perform remote high-altitude sky-scraper hit jobs. Nice for a bit of corporate take-overing at 120 floors.

Looks like they're full-scale operational, as of June 2009 - here's MULE's first engine start. One can only speculate how far along they are now. Need more data, more movies, more updates.

I didn't realise until only recenty that there was such a MASSIVE Israeli lobby in the US Congress and Israel is a major player in the surveillance and telecommunications sector, with more technology companies per capita than anywhere on the planet and most of the billing of international telephone calls going through Israeli-owned company Comverse who own Verint® Systems, a leading provider of Actionable Intelligence® solutions for enterprise workforce optimization and security intelligence.

•RELIANT™ lawful interception and analysis for municipal and national law enforcement agencies.
•VANTAGE® target and mass interception, filtering, and analysis for national security and intelligence agencies.
•STAR-GATE™ lawful interception and data retention compliance solutions for service providers.
•X-TRACT® data fusion and analytics for law enforcement and government agencies.
•ENGAGE™ tactical, portable communications interception for covert field operation.
•Probes for passive interception of target and mass communications.

Telecoms and surveillance, together at last. Welcome to 1984-redux.

In summary, you think I've been slightly over-reactive about the X-Hawk, don't you? You're saying, "Mike, look at the lovely yellow modular design alternatives." this can only be good, right? An innovative design that can help pick up stranded people from burning hi-rises and allow swifter, safer access to accident situations.

Yeah, that's all cool but remember the initial video was in an URBAN WAR setting. And even in that it was only being used to ferry troops in and out. Take a look then at this special stealthy black battle version from the Farnborough 2006 Airshow. Notice the forward-mounted M134-like Vulcan Cannons.

Shittin' it yet?

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