Vertipedia is a product of the Vertical Flight Society. With data on 862 aircraft, 613 historical milestones, 477 people, and 394 organizations, Vertipedia is your "one-stop shop" for all things vertical lift.

1931 - First flight of an autogiro/gyroplane with a pusher prop (Buhl A-1)

1969 - First flight of Harbin Z-6 helicopter

2015 - Royal Netherlands Air Force (RNLAF) Alouette III leaves service

Our latest featured aircraft for December is the Cierva W.11 Air Horse .

Attribution

The aircraft was designed to provide viable heavy load lifting capability for commercial operations. It employed 3 main rotors all rotating in the same direction. Torque offset was provided by thrust components from the 3 rotors through built-in shaft tilt. The aircraft had a semi-monoquoque structure, a single engine, and a long-stroke undercarriage (5ft) to cope with high rates of descent.  A description of the aircraft and its characteristics can be found in the following references,

Source: "The Cierva W-11 Air Horse", J. Gordon Leishman, VERTIFLITE Spring 2003, Page 52

Source: "Discussing the Helicopter", FLIGHT Staff, FLIGHT, December 2nd 1948, Pages 665-668

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Vertipedia notes are brief descriptions of how and why Vertipedia works the way it does. Check back often for the latest note, or view the complete list.

Countries for Biographies

Biographies have two fields, the country of birth and the country of primary activity (as people move during their career). The reason for includng both fields is to avoid the confusions that could occur if a single field 'Country' was included. The country of birth is a fact. The country of primary activity requires subjective assessment. The Vertipedia team has made an assessment for the country of primary activity but we welcome feedback if there is any disagreement.

Vertipedia makes it easy for you to find a range of information on vertical flight, including:

  • Targeted searches of documents provided by the Vertical Flight Society, as well as public sources from across the internet
  • Important milestones that have helped shape the history of vertical flight
  • People who have played a role in vertical flight
  • Vertical flight aircraft, such as helicopters, tilt rotors and tilt wings, jet-lift VTOL, and more.

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