For a while now I have been thinking of an idea which I wanted to share on ATS,
As with most ideas theres a chance someone has thought of this,but maybe not so here it is-
So,you may have seen these newish LED fan holograms-They are cool as heck and give the illusion of a real hologram,a 3D object apparently projected
into the air-it is just an illusion though,what is happening is a high speed fan has color changing LED lights the length of its blades,and combined
with clever software they flash and change colour in order to make a picture or video appear to float in the air.
They can be mounted on a singular fan(like in the below video),or larger images and even movies can be projected using an array of fans.
If you haven't seen one here is an example:
So they are marketed towards advertisers and store owners who wish to display products-but what I think would be really cool(and useful)would be if
helicoptor rotors assumed the role of the fan-I think they rotate plenty fast enough,and without making the helicopter too heavy or unsafe,I think you
could display an image/words either underneath the helicopter of above it.
Possible useful underneath displays:
Police,Rescue,Medic,news crew signs clearly showing ground observers what purpose a particular helicopter has.
Keep clear signs-maybe useful for tail rotors while running on the ground,or on landing helicopters.
Height from ground information,maybe useful as an extra layer of info for aircraft carrier ground crew,telling them info about height,wind speed tilt
and the like.
Possible useful top side of rotor display:
A camera on the belly of the copter project the image of the ground below in real time to the top of the rotors,thereby camouflaging the coptor from
aircraft above them(not from radar obviously).
And then.just for the hell of it and because it would be cool AF:
FLAPPING DRAGON WINGS!
Imagine an Apache,all painted up to look like a dragon,with 3D holographic wings!
I bet that would have sent the Taliban scurrying back into their caves.
Of course,all the above could also be used on quadcopters as well-Maybe handy and fun in the future if automatic QC taxis become a thing.
So anyone with lots of money and a helicopter,feel free to give it a go!
The first problem is sunlight. The leds would have to be bright enough to be visible with the sun shining on them. For night only use, i don't see a
weight problem if it would be able to add a single strip to the bottom or top of the main rotor embedded within it. I don't see being able to cover
the entire surface of a rotor that would be probably be required for daylight use.
The second problem is frame rate. A helicopter main rotor spins form 450 to 500 rpm. This means with two blades, the frame rate is from 15 to 16.6
frames per second. This would not be fast enough to approach the usual 24 frames per second for movies and TV, computer dispalys and HDTVs are even
faster. It would flicker a lot. The helicopters with more blades rotate slower so that would not help.
The third problem is how do you compensate for blade angle of attack changes? The main rotor blades actually changed the angle of attack as it
rotates. The blades do not stay in a fixed position related to each other as they spin. This would cause distortion as viewed from different angles
and different flight control settings. The angle you would view the leds changes in different positions as you look at different areas of the rotor.
I kinda like your thought process.
Wanna make it affordable?
Make the projection screen bottom mount on a big octocopter drone.
The problem I see is with scale. A 10ft screen is huge in front of you, but at 100ft it's almost worthless.
The other issue is a mechanical blade spinning.
It would be annoying if it's close enough to see, you would hear it.
It would be a cool bladerunner thing on buildings, but again, it would have to be silent.
You'd probably have to take on the "windmill birder-ers" crowd too.
For that, I was thinking a simplified USB type buss but only one way communications. Just two wires to all the leds providing power, addressing, and
intensity for each one. Feedback to the controller would be a camera looking at the rotor. Less of a problem than the physical ones.
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