Rotor kite Articles on aviation - Aircraft
airports worldwide
Other aviation articles
Airport photos
Aircraft photos
Spacecraft photos
Earth from airplane
Earth from space
Airports worldwide
Advertise for free!
Rotor kite

By Wikipedia,
the free encyclopedia,

Rotor kite
Part of a series on
Categories of Aircraft
Supported by Lighter-Than-Air Gases (aerostats)
Unpowered Powered
Balloon Airship
Supported by LTA Gases + Aerodynamic Lift
Unpowered Powered
Hybrid airship
Supported by Aerodynamic Lift (aerodynes)
Unpowered Powered
Unpowered fixed-wing Powered fixed-wing
hang gliders
• Powered airplane (aeroplane)
powered hang gliders
Powered paraglider
Flettner airplane
Ground-effect vehicle
Powered hybrid fixed/rotary wing
Mono Tiltrotor
Mono-tilt-rotor rotary-ring
Unpowered rotary-wing Powered rotary-wing
Rotor kite Autogyro
Gyrodyne ("Heliplane")
Powered aircraft driven by flapping
Other Means of Lift
Unpowered Powered
Flying Bedstead

A rotor kite or gyroglider is an unpowered, rotary-wing aircraft. Like an autogyro or helicopter, it relies on lift created by one or more sets of rotors in order to fly. Unlike a helicopter, autogyros and rotor kites do not have an engine powering their rotors, but while an autogyro has an engine providing forward thrust that keeps the rotor turning, a rotor kite has no engine at all, and relies on either being carried aloft and dropped from another aircraft, or by being towed into the air behind a car or boat. As of 2008, no country in the world requires a license to pilot such a craft.


Research into rotor kites began in earnest during World War II, and one type in particular, the Focke Achgelis Fa 330, reached active service, being towed behind German U-boats as an aerial observation platform. In the United Kingdom, the Hafner Rotachute was investigated as a means of deploying paratroops, and a larger version, the Rotabuggy was trialled as a means of air-dropping a Jeep, but neither of these aircraft progressed past the experimental stage. Plans to similarly equip a tank (the Rotatank) never left the drawing board.

During the 1950s, rotor kites were developed as recreational aircraft, largely due to the efforts of Dr. Igor Bensen in the United States, whose Bensen Aircraft Corporation produced a series of such aircraft, dubbed "gyrogliders" by Bensen. These were marketed as plans or kits for building at home, beginning with the B-5 and culminating in the definitive B-8 by the end of the decade. The Bensen designs became so ubiquitous that the term "gyroglider" is sometimes used to refer to any rotor kite, regardless of manufacturer. In the 1960s, a B-8 gyroglider was evaluated by the United States Air Force as a "Discretionary Descent Vehicle", to provide a more controllable alternative than a parachute for a pilot ejecting from a stricken aircraft.

See also

External links

Text from Wikipedia is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License; additional terms may apply.

Published in July 2009.

Click here to read more articles related to aviation and space!

christianity portal
directory of hotels worldwide

Copyright 2004-2024 © by, Vyshenskoho st. 36, Lviv 79010, Ukraine
Legal Disclaimer