Hornisse Type 2B
Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA)
Chofu, Tokyo, Japan
The JAXA Hornisse (Hornet) Type 2B is a scaled prototype developed to study and demonstrate the feasibility of a Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL) aircraft with a configuration that houses the fan in a cylindrical duct.
The Type 2B model is 2.3 m long, 0.5 m high with a 1.98 m wingspan. There are six fans with two vertical fans one behind the other on each side inboard and a tilting fan on each wingtip.
While the Hornisse will remain a demonstration model the goal is to ultimately develop a VTOL vehicle capable of connecting Japanese communities where its common steep geographical profile and mountainous terrain significantly slows land travel.
JAXA has completed its laboratory hovering tests. For the next level of testing JAXA will subject the prototype to level test flights in an outdoor environment to establish its lift fan-type VTOL airframe control technology.
JAXA is also looking into the feasibility of a two-seater VTOL aircraft.
The Hornisse model is credited to the JAXA aerospace engineer Masashi Harada.