Composite Structures-Technical Breakthrough for Helicopter Rotor Blades 751108
In this decade we are witnessing the transition from all metal to all composite helicopter rotor blades. One such helicopter is already in full scale production. A driving factor is structural reliability and guarantee against catastrophic failure. Low crack propagation rate and the nature of failures in composite structures are the characteristics which make this quality product superior to metal structures for rotor blades. The ability to economically tailor blades aerodynamically and dynamically offer important advances in performance, flying qualities, low stress levels, and low vibratory forces.