New fuselage-free Horten HX-2 ‘flying wing’ aircraft makes its global debut

New fuselage-free Horten HX-2 'flying wing' aircraft makes its global debut

A new fuselage-free “flying wing” prototype has proved that it can, and it made its global debut at Germany’s AERO Friedrichshafen airshow on April 11.

Hugo Junkers patented his “nurflügel” flying wing concept back in 1910 and Horten Aircraft’s name is a reference to German aircraft designer Ing Reimar Horten, a pioneer in the field. Horten and his brother Walter designed the world’s first jet-powered flying wing, the Horten Ho 229, towards the end of World War II. The aircraft is sometimes referred to as “Hitler’s Stealth Fighter.”

After three years of development, the prototype of a two-seat aircraft side by side has flown in the hands of test pilot Kai Schülter. The device, called HX-2, is one of the novelties presented at the AERO 2019 show in Friedrichshafen.

The Horten HX-2 light aircraft has been three years in development and is currently undergoing flight testing.

Its wing span is a sweeping 10 meters, with lifted tips, but its tailless, tiny two-seater cabin has a maximum length of just two meters.

New fuselage-free Horten HX-2 'flying wing' aircraft makes its global debut

This aircraft is a highly modern economical two-seat tailless light aircraft without a fuselage.

“Due to its low aerodynamic resistance, the flying wing flies farther and faster than a comparable aircraft with a fuselage,” says Bernhard Mattlener, managing director of the company, a part of the LIFT Air group. “The design of the airframe makes it easily adaptable for installing new propulsion technologies we anticipate will become available in the future.”

Horten Aircraft says that its craft is based on Reimar Horten’s original revolutionary all-wing concept while incorporating new blended-wing body technology.

It’s powered by a Rotax 912 engine with two 120-liter fuel tanks, and it’s made of carbon/glass-fiber materials.

It’s a propeller-driven “pusher” plane, meaning that the propeller pushes the plane forward, instead of pulling it through the air.

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