United States Patent Office


Patented Apr. 28, 1964

3,130,945 IONOCRAFT Alexander P. de Seversky, New York, N.Y., assignor to

Electronatom Corporation, New York, N.Y., a corporation of New York

Filed Aug. 31, 1959, Ser. No. 837,150 29 Claims. (CI. 244—62)

This invention relates to improved heavier-than-air aircraft, and more specifically to structures which are capable of either hovering or moving in any direction at high altitudes by means of ionic discharge.

The present invention is an improvement over well known electrostatic generation of winds used in a novel manner to supply propulsion and sustainance forces for a heavier-than-air aircraft. Crafts of the types herein disclosed having effective areas of several square feet have been successfully flown and contemplated platforms will inherently be of large size since the lift force is proportionate to the area through which large quantities or masses of air are accelerated downwardly from discharge electrodes to collection electrodes, the latter being a meshed-screen, bars, strips or any other structure that provides maximum collecting electrode area with perforations, slots or other types of opening to allow the air to pass through with a minimum of drag. Such a craft will be referred to in this application as an Ionocraft.

Such Ionocraft may serve as platforms which would be stationed above the earth for long periods of time and serve other purposes as will be explained below. The output power from microwave generators, such as magnetrons, coupled with high power capacity amplifier tubes may be beamed to the Ionocraft while airborne or the craft may carry its own power supply.

A principal object of the present invention is to provida a novel Ionocraft provided by the structure, preferably at the center of the craft, for installation of electronic equipment, and for the power plant, and crew where used.

Another object is to provide a novel Ionocraft construction wherein lightweight reinforcing members are provided to form a structure sufficiently rigid to cope with the dynamic and static loads and to maintain a desired distance between discharge emitting wires and the collecting grid.

Still another object resides in the novel configuration and arrangement of the emitting wires to assure uniform spacing from the collecting grid and to provide a maximum number of ionized particles for producing the desired lift.

A further object is to provide an improved Ionocraft of the foregoing type wherein some structural formation such as dihedral is provided for stabilizing the craft during flight. The dihedral may be positive or negative depending upon whether the hovering flight or horizontal motion of aircraft is a primary consideration of performance of the craft. A multiple deck structure may be used where desired to increase the lifting force, and dihedral may be provided in two or more angularly related directions to provide stability in all directions. A conical shape with the apex or nadir at the top or bottom center may also be advantageously used.

Still another object is to provide auxiliary ionic discharge structures mounted for rotational movement which are oriented to provide a horizontal propelling force and steering forces which can change the direction of the craft. By mounting such auxiliary structures to turn about a vertical axis, the craft can be made to turn in a horizontal plane about a vertical axis passing through the craft to thereby provide a scanning or target searching apparatus. A similar scanning motion can be achieved by mounting the auxiliary structures to turn about a horizontal axis.

A further object of this invention resides in the provision of a novel stick control using variable electrical im-5 pedances for control of the posture and for maneuvering the craft through variation of the voltage applied to different portions of the craft.

A second principal object of the present invention is to provide a combination Ionocraft and antenna system for 10 radio frequency energy wherein the structure of the Ionocraft is so arranged as to serve in whole or in part as a structure of an efficient electromagnetic antenna system. In accordance with this object of the invention, the device contains one or more antennas that may be used for corn-15 munication signal transmission, for detection, tracking and/or identification and for eventual destruction through collision of oncoming airborne or space vehicles or missiles and the like. The Ionocraft structure may be used, for example, as the main antenna clement, as a 20 series of directing or reflecting elements or as a parasitic element and may be shaped to provide arrays parabolas, corner reflectors, horns or lenses and be adapted to transmit a single or complete spectrum of frequencies from the extremely low frequencies to the highest frequencies 25 including infrared.

Another object of this invention is to provide a combination antenna-Ionocraft with scanning means for detecting and/or tracking airborne vehicles or missiles. Such combination may also include suitable servo-control 30 and other conventional equipment either on the Ionocraft or at a nearby ground station for causing the Ionocraft to "lock-on" automatically and/or be guided into the path of an "oncoming" vehicle or missile.

A further object is to provide an antenna which con-35 stantly locks on a radiation beam, such as a microwave or light beam for example, projected from the ground or from an aircraft in flight to change the position of the Ionocraft in flight.

These and other objects of the invention will become 40 more fully apparent from the claims, and from the specification when read in conjunction with the appended drawings wherein:

FIGURES I and 2 (Sheet 1) are top plan and elevation views of the basic structure of an Ionocraft made in 45 accordance with the present invention;

FIGURE 2a is an enlarged pictorial view of a portion of the structure showing how the grid wires are connected to the frame members;

FIGURE 3 (Sheet 2) is a pictorial view of a modified 50 form of basic structure;

FIGURE 4 is a view in elevation of an embodiment similar to that shown in FIGURE 3 which is equipped with dihedral;

FIGURE 5 (Sheet 4) is a schematic view of a craft 55 equipped with dihedral in two perpendicular directions;

FIGURES 6 and 7 (Sheet 3) are top plan and side elevation views respectively of a further embodiment of the present invention which is equipped with negative dihedral;

60 FIGURE 8 is a cross section of collecting grid structural members which may be used in lieu of the wire mesh;

FIGURE 9 is a view in elevation of an emitting wire having short wires suspended from tfye main wire to progs vide a point source for ion emission;

FIGURE 10 (Sheet 4) is a diagrammatic view in elevation of an Ionocraft in accordance with this invention;

FIGURES 11 and 12 are top plan views of two embodiments of the Ionocraft having a side elevation view as 70 illustrated in FIGURE 10;

FIGURES 13 and 14 are top plan and elevation views of a further embodiment of this invention;


Saving Power, Saving The World

Saving Power, Saving The World

Get All The Support And Guidance You Need To Be A Success At Helping Save Power. This Book Is One Of The Most Valuable Resources In The World When It Comes To How To Use Renewable Energy As Your Alternative Power Suppliers.

Get My Free Ebook

Post a comment