Cargo and Freight
Heavy Lift Sling
Hybrid Airship vs Heavy Lift Helo
Positioning the LMH1 as a direct replacement for medium and heavy lift helicopters is the first, natural market opportunity. In the simplest terms, an LMH1 can perform 9 out of 10 tasks done by helicopters such as the S64 Skycrane or the CH47 Chinook, and it can do it bigger, safer and with much less cost. The cost benefits can be illustrated most clearly with a direct cost comparison by flight hours ($/hour) and the cost to move one ton, one mile ($/ton-mile). Costs per ton-mile comparisons give us a way to understand the specific cost of completing a task. Hourly cost comparisons give us a way to understand how and why one aircraft type has a cost benefit compared to another.
Cargo movement using helicopters is viewed as last resort due to high cost. In general the purchase price of a heavy lift cargo helicopter (Chinook CH-47, Sikorsky S-92, EC 225 and Erickson Skycrane) are comparable to that of the Hybrid airships at $30-$40M, with maintenance costs that vary based on up-time, but range $3-$5 mm annually depending on use. Fee structures for customers include fixed monthly or annual fee to reserve capacity, and/or hourly fees based on hours flown (varies significantly based on helicopter type). Project management and team mobilization can cost up to $125,000 per project.
Hybrid Airship vs Boeing 737
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Centerline payload beam for externally slung loads
The Hybrid Airship will be capable of carrying more than 23 tons of cargo along with 19 passengers and two crew members.
The spacious flight deck and 19-seat passenger cabin sit atop the forward ACLS pad, which dictated the large size of that section of the gondola.
The Hybrid Airships fuel and equipment bay is directly behind the cabin, and the cavernous cargo bay is at the rear of the gondola. The compartment can hold up to 21,000 kilograms (21 tonnes) of payload, and is a little bigger than the cargo box of Lockheed Martin’s venerable C-130 Hercules transport aircraft.
It has a fuel capacity of 5,000 gallons with a range of 1,400 nautical miles, and can cruise at a speed of 60 knots.
Rigid Inflatable Boats (RIBs) launched out of the Hybrid Aircraft rear cargo door offer the opportunity to deliver personnel and cargo to offshore platforms in regions where wind and sea-state are reasonably calm.
The boats range in size from 12 passengers to 75 passengers, typically operating within 200 miles of a major port facility, delivering people and small cargo to the off shore oil fields where there are more than a dozen platforms and rigs in operation. The boats would remain in use within the oil field area to move the people and cargo from the small HA to the platform.
The HA would be in taxi mode with the thrusters engaged to maintain position with the nose into the wind. The boat would mate with the boarding ladder and push against it to maintain a hard connection. Passenger and small cargo would be moved off or onto the boat. Upon completion of the movement, the boat would back away and return to the platform, the gangway would be pulled back into the cargo bay and the HA would return to its home base.
Safety and Environmentally Friendly
An example of how the Hybrid Airship will revolationalise the current way in which we transport speciality products explaining how Wind Turbines are currently transported and explain how the Hybrid Airship will make the process more economic and safer.
Wind turbines are large, heavy and extremely difficult to transport. Typically, in traditional route planning, the fastest, most cost-effective route is chosen. However, with wind turbine transportation, the best route is adjusted for limitations and barriers, including both physical and regulatory.
Currently, wind components are transported using a variety of different modes, including ship, rail and truck. For example, a 150 megawatt wind farm can require as many as 650 truckloads, 140 railcars and eight ships to complete the transportation process. Due to the size of the wind turbine sections that have to be transported any miss calculations can cause major accidents.
Hybrid Airships are capable of hauling more than 40,000 pounds of cargo, equipment and personnel with little to no infrastructure. It offers the capability to seamlessly transport turbine and installation and offloading equipment for 1,400 nautical miles without refueling. The Hybrid Airship is capable of serving as a blade carrier and handler. Attached to the airship’s gondola, a two part system is self-propelled and designed to securely hold the blade during transport, facilitate the process of loading and unloading, and provide support to easily transport the blade once on land.
Additionally, the airship’s one-of-a-kind air cushion landing system allows wind turbine companies to affordably and safely transport parts to nearly anywhere on the planet. Coupling its strength with technologies that preserve the environment and create efficiencies.