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VX-1 KittyHawk first flight

News International-French

7 Jul 2014

Successful first flight test for Chomarat’s C-ply aircraft model.

The ¼ scale version of the VX-1 KittyHawk has just successfully completed his first maiden flight at the Foothills Regional Airport between Morganton and Lenoir, NC. KittyHawk, the new aircraft with a unique shape made structurally efficient thanks to Chomarat’s advanced composite reinforcement material took off and flew for just under five minutes.

KittyHawk: the first VX Aerospace aircraft manufactured with C-PlyTM
C-Ply is designed to optimize fiber performance. This is a game changer for small business doing aerospace grade work, because it allows for cost-effective production of open mold parts with the same (or better) performance characteristics as parts manufactured by automated tape placement. This, in turn, can save up to millions of dollars in investment.

It is the enabling material for using VX Aerospace established hand lay-up and oven curing processes, to economically achieve properties similar to autoclave cured UD (uni-directional) prepreg and automatically placed tape prepreg. The material is durable to handle during lay-up, drapable to accommodate the compound curvatures, and can be manufactured to fully optimize the design relative to fiber angles and ply weights… to ultimately yield a low weight, high performance, and low cost final solution.

A unique shape with no wings for a reduced carbon footprint
What makes KittyHawk so different from other aircraft is its shape: it has no wings! The aircraft design allows for more useable space inside the aircraft, greater payload capacity, better structural efficiency and better durability.

Furthermore, it will have a smaller footprint than other aircrafts when based on payload capability. “The volume will also allow KittyHawk to lead the way in adopting CNG (compressed natural gas) as an aviation fuel. Existing technology CNG tanks fit inside the aircraft with no aerodynamic compromise. At less than 1/3 the cost of avgas, KittyHawk will have unparalleled operational economy with emissions that are 40% cleaner.” said Bob Skillen, VX Aerospace’s CEO.

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