Chinese Helicopters - Zhishengji
|Current Production / Development|
|2-ton||Eurocopter AS350 Ecureuil||WZ-11||AC311|
|5-ton||Eurocopter SA360 Dauphin||Z-9W||WZ-ZZ|
|5-ton||Eurocopter SA360 Dauphin||WZ-19||AC312||H425|
|Current Production / Development|
Transport / Utility
|2-ton||Eurocopter AS350 Ecureuil||Z-11||AC311|
|2-ton||Eurocopter EC120 Colibri||HC120|
|3-ton||Agusta A109 Hirundo||AC332||CA109|
|5-ton||Eurocopter SA360 Dauphin||Z-9||AC312||H410 / H425|
|13-ton||SA321 Super Frelon||Z-8||AC313|
|30-ton||Z-YY AHL||Blue Whale QTR|
|Prior Completed Programs|
|1-ton||Bell 047||Type 701|
|Defunct Joint Ventures|
Initially Chinese helicopters were all designated "Zhishengji". An aircraft type only gets a Chinese designation after it is produced in China. One example is the Su-27SK, which only received the J-11 designation for the licence manufactured machines. Another example is the Mi-8/Mi-17 Hind. But by around 2010 China had too many designations chasing too few helicopters, withe some helicopters having as many as three distinct Chinese names, in addition to the nomenclature associated with the Western design upon which the Chinese helicopter was based.
A helicopter is an aircraft whose lift is generated by engine-driven rotor(s) and whose flight is realized by changing the magnitude and direction of the lift through special transmission system and control system. Generally it has the abilities to fly forward, to ascend and descend vertically, to hover, to autorotate and glide downward and to fly backward and sideward. The helicopter is different from conventional aircraft and has its own specialities: its flight speed is lower but the performed flight states are much more complicated; it requires less structural strength but its requirement to the dynamic components is much more severe.
Helicopters have time and again proven to be essential to the majority of 21st century military operations in both conventional wars and counter-insurgency-type campaigns. Helicopters, after all, can provide a means for moving personnel and cargo even in areas where prepared airfields and even roads are poor or do not exist. The ability of these rotorcraft to hover or to fly slower than fixed-wing aircraft also make them invaluable in surveillance and providing air support. Helicopters embarked on naval vessels also significantly extend the reach and capabilities of these ships. Helicopters have further been useful in humanitarian operations where they are often the best, or even the only, means of transport in disaster-stricken areas.
The generally acknowledged first manned helicopter in the world appeared in Germany in the 1930s and it was a side-by-side twin-rotor helicopter. So far four generations of the helicopter have been developed since its pratical application in the late 1940s.
- The first generation helicopter was generally powered with piston engines, it used the rotor blades made of steel and wood and the maximum forward flight speed was about 200 km / h.
- The second generation helicopter generally used turboshaft engines and metal rotor blades and the maximum forward flight speed was about 250 km / h.
- The third generation helicopter generally used turboshaft engines and reinforced glassfibre plastic rotor blades and the forward flight speed was 300 km / h.
- The fourth generation helicopter has been developed since the mid-1970s. It generally uses turboshaft engines. The composite materials and titanium alloys have been widely used in its structure. The forward flight speed usually is higher than 350 km / h.
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