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HistoryOver several centuries, many inventors have tried to successfully build and fly a helicopter.During the mid 1500s, Italian inventor and artist Leonardo da vinci made drawings of an ornithopter flying machine which might have inspired people to try building a helicopter.Over 200 years later in 1784, a French inventor named Launoy and Bienvenue created a toy with a rotary wing that proved the principle of helicopter flight.The word comes from 2 words; "helico" meaning spiral, and "pter" meaning wings. The person who created this word was a french writer named Ponton D'Amercourt.A few inventors in the 1920s were able to fly their helicopters for a short distance such as tha German Focke-Wulf FW-61. It flew about 1 kilometer.The first truly successful helicopter was invented by Russian born inventor Igor Sikorsky. By 1940 his VS-300 helicopter had become the model for all single rotor helicopters. He also designed and built the first military helicopter, the XR-4, which he gave to Colonel Franklin Gregory of the U.S. army. Igor's helicopters could fly forwards, backwards, up and down and sideways.


Operation There are main items controlling the helicopter's flight. These are the cydic, collective and the throttle.The cydic controlls the forward and backward movement of of a helicopter as well as it's roll and yaw. Press the left pedal to turn left and the right pedal to right. The collective makes the helicopter ascend and descend. Raise the collective to go up and lower it to go down. The throttle controlls the acceleration of the helicopter. The throttle which is at the end of the collective makes helicopter go forward or backward.

StructureSome parts of a helicopter vary from type to type, but some essential parts of any helicopter would be the main rotor, the drive shaft, the cockpit, the landing skis, the engine, the tail boom and the tail rotor. The main rotor controlls which direction the helicopter flies. Wherever the main rotor is facing, that is the direction in which the helicopter will fly. THe drive shaft helps control the power and rotation of the motor. The cockpit is where the pilot and copilot sit if there is a copilot. The landing skis are for shock-absorbing landing gear.The engine is used to power the helicopter by using fuel. The tail boom and tail rotor are there to create balance when flying. Without them, the helicopter would spin in one direction sending the body flying in the opposite direction.

Types of HelicoptersThere are three main types of helicopters including single rotor helicopters, tandem helicopters, and coaxial rotor helicopters.Single Rotor Helicopters:These helicopters have a main rotor and a tail rotor. The tail rotor is for stability as well as to prevent the helicopter from spinning in the opposite direction as the desired direction. (Newtons 3rd law;"for every action, there is an equal and oppostie reaction.") The tail ro is vertically attached to the helicopter.When the blades of the rotor are tilted they will go in the direction of the tilt. Tandem HelicoptersThese helicopters have no tail rotor, but they have two main rotors. Having two rotors spinning in the opposite direction creates opposite torque, therefore cancellin each other out. The controls of this helicopter are like that of a single rotor helicopter. To turn tilt both rotors in the desired direction.Coxial Rotor HelicoptersThese helicopters hve two rotors mounted one on top of another.Like the tandem helicopter having two rotors spinning in the opposite direction reduces torque and increases stability. To change direction of these helicopters you move one rotor in the desired direction and turn the other rotor the opposite way.

Copy the following address to watch a video on helicopters.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UVf08JLUmjU


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