If lift exceeds weight, the helicopter climbs; if lift is less than weight, the helicopter descends. If thrust exceeds drag, the helicopter increases speed; if thrust is less than drag, it decreases speed.
How does a helicopter use drag?
The force that resists the movement of a helicopter through the air and is produced when lift is developed is called drag. Drag must be overcome by the engine to turn the rotor. Drag always acts parallel to the relative wind.
What makes a helicopter lose control?
Loss of main rotor control is commonly due to a malfunction in either the swash plate (a device that transmits flight controls to the rotor), linkage control, or a hydraulic system. Loss of tail rotor function. Numerous helicopter crashes are caused by the pilot’s inability to control the tail rotor.
What are the three forces that affect helicopter flight?
There are four forces acting on a helicopter in flight. They are lift, weight, thrust, and drag. See figure 2-1. Lift is the upward force created by the effect of airflow as it passes around an airfoil.
How does weight affect a helicopter?
A: Helicopters are affected by the same four forces that planes are: lift, weight, drag, and thrust. … As it spins, the airfoil shaped propeller blades (just like airplane wings) force the air over the top to speed up, which decreases pressure, while the air underneath keeps its higher pressure.
How do helicopters go forward?
Only the main rotor is used to move the helicopter up and down, and to make the helicopter tilt forward, backward, left, or right. … By tilting a blade to increase the blade’s angle of attack, the pilot can increase the force of lift that is pushing up on that blade.
Does induced drag increase with speed?
Induced drag increases as the angle of attack of a wing increases. Induced drag therefore increases as airspeed decreases, as the angle of attack must increase to maintain the lift required for level flight. … Parasite drag has little effect at low speeds, however it increases as airspeed increases.
What happens if a helicopter engine stops?
If the helicopter engine stops, everything will go quiet in the cockpit, and the machine will yaw violently to one side. When this happens, the pilot needs to instantly lower the collective, taking the pitch off the rotor blades, and initiating a descent.
What causes most helicopter crashes?
The vast majority of helicopter accidents involve some form of pilot error. This can include loss of aircraft control, improper training, failure to recognize a potential crash situation, or flying while intoxicated, distracted, or overtired.
Why are helicopter crashes so deadly?
Helicopter accidents are almost always fatal.
This is due to the risk of failure that increases the longer the craft is in the air. In air travel, helicopters in particular have one of the highest rates of fatal mechanical failure. Helicopters are used as a search and rescue device for paramedics.
How high can a helicopter fly?
Turbine-engined helicopters can reach around 25,000 feet. But the maximum height at which a helicopter can hover is much lower – a high performance helicopter like the Agusta A109E can hover at 10,400 feet.
Why is a helicopter hovering over my house?
While military helicopters may fly over houses for training, law enforcement helicopters fly over residential properties for a variety of reasons. Police departments in many cities have helicopters that are dispatched to assist officers on the ground.
How far can helicopters fly?
As a general rule, helicopters usually fly around 2.5 to 5 hours before they have to stop and refuel. This translates to a distance of roughly 250 miles, which means that they can fly a lot farther than many people realize before they have to stop.
Do helicopters have a weight limit?
The weight limit is set by the tour operator, but it’s usually around 299 pounds. So, as a general rule, passengers who weigh more than that will need to pay a weight surcharge before they’re allowed to board their chopper. The amount of the surcharge is set by the tour company that’s operating the flight.
Does humidity affect helicopters?
Humidity alone is usually not considered an important factor in calculating density altitude and helicopter performance; however, it does contribute.
How much weight a helicopter can lift?
Light utility helicopters frequently lift between 1,200 and 4,000 pounds. On the other end of the spectrum is the M-26–the world’s largest heavy-lift helicopter–which is capable of transporting up to 44,000 pounds.