Monday, March 11, 2013

Boeing X-48 Blended Wing Body

Boeing had in the past studied a blended wing body design, but found that passengers did not like the theater-like configuration of the mock-up; the design was dropped for passenger airliners, but retained for military aircraft such as aerial refueling tankers  From Wikipedia

 General characteristics
  • Crew: None
  • Wingspan: 20 ft 5 in (6.22 m)
  • Wing area: 100.5 sq ft (9.34 m2)
  • Aspect ratio: 4.1
  • Gross weight: 500 lb (227 kg)
  • Powerplant: 3 × JetCat P200 turbojet, 52 lbf (0.23 kN) thrust each
  • Maximum speed: 136 mph; 219 km/h (118 kn)
  • Endurance: 40 minutes
  • Service ceiling: 10,000 ft (3,048 m)

The blended wing body (BWB) concept offers advantages in structural, aerodynamic and operating efficiencies over today's more conventional fuselage-and-wing designs. These features translate into greater range, fuel economy, reliability and life cycle savings, as well as lower manufacturing costs. They also allow for a wide variety of potential military and commercial applications.

1 comment:

  1. The X-48 aircraft is an investigational unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) aimed at studying the characteristics of the blended wing body (BWB) for aircraft. I read here that "The BWB concept for X-48 aircraft was developed by Boeing Phantom Works with the Nasa Langley Research Centre."