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Scaled Composites Rutan ARES

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posted on Dec, 16 2004 @ 02:35 AM

What do you guys/girls think of this aircraft and it's designs? should this have been the LCBAA (Low Cost Battlefield Attack Aircraft)?

Why was it never fielded?

Personally I love the idea and the design...

posted on Dec, 16 2004 @ 03:11 AM
Do you have any links or further info & stats about the pictured plane?
Rutan is a great guy and the only guy who has really made me think commercial space travel will be viable in the next 10-20 years.

posted on Dec, 16 2004 @ 03:16 AM
nice aircraft, Burt Rutan does design some lovely shaped aircraft. The problem I see with this aircraft is that it probably will have a large heat seeking signature due to the location and size of the engine. But im sure they could do a 'work around' to fix this.

Also its a very small aircraft, I wonder what the limits would be for carrying ordanance. Probably only able to carry perhaps two Hellfire and a couple of sidewinders. If it was to be used for Battlefield attack it would need hard points for AGM - 122 Anti Radar and would definately need a Cannon.


[edit on 16-12-2004 by spacemunkey]

posted on Dec, 16 2004 @ 04:37 AM
I believe, from memory, that the cannon was to be located on the opposite side of the fuselage to the single air intake that you can see in the picture.

My only thought re the Ares is that it would ber underpowered but a productionised version could easily be re-engined with a re designed rear fulselage. The greater installed power would greatly assisit in low level manoevering with a full load, I don't think payload would have been a problem, at least 5,000lb ordnance would be able to be carried, maybe even more with enough power and an advanced high lift aerofoil section.

The concept is very similar to the BAe SABA, but in Rutan's own style. The fact that neither type attracted any buyers probably shows us that such a type is not seen as needed by the Air Force chiefs of today.

posted on Dec, 16 2004 @ 07:20 AM
Straight from Scaled Composites themselves:

Agile Responsive Effective Support

The ARES, Scaled Model 151, was designed initially in response to a U.S. Army request for a Low Cost Battlefield Attack Aircraft (LCBAA). A design study was performed by Rutan Aircraft Factory in 1981 for such an aircraft. The original LCBAA design was for a pusher turboprop aircraft, of generally the same aerodynamic configuration you see here. It also was designed around a 30mm chain gun. Its mission goals were low-altitude, close air support, with long endurance, and with adequate field performance to operate from roads. Its structure and systems were simple enough to be maintained and repaired in the field.

Scaled followed up with the concept, and ultimately decided to build a demonstrator aircraft with internal funds. By the time construction started in 1986, the design had evolved to the current configuration: a single Pratt and Whitney Canada JT15D-5 turbofan engine (same as in the Beechjet / T-1A Jayhawk), and a GAU-12/U 25mm gatling gun.

The ARES first flew on February 19, 1990, with Scaled test pilot Doug Shane at the controls. Since that first flight, the ARES has flown more than 250 hours, and demonstrated all of its design performance and handling qualities goals, including departure-free handling at full aft stick. During November of 1991, under a contract from the U.S. Air Force, initial ground and flight (air-air and air-ground) tests of the GAU-12/U gun system installed in ARES were performed, with outstanding results.

Movie buffs may also remember the ARES villainously portraying the secret ME-263 jet in the screen classic Iron Eagle III.

Since its initial development, ARES has been utilized for development of some unique, proprietary systems, and is currently available for use as a research testbed.

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