Military Review

Brazil develops a military transport aircraft with a hybrid propulsion system

Brazil develops a military transport aircraft with a hybrid propulsion system

On November 13, 2020, within the framework of a national defense conference, which was organized by the Brazilian Ministry of Defense, the Air Force of this Latin American country presented the concept of a future light military transport aircraft, known as STOUT. The new aircraft, the main feature of which should be a hybrid power plant, was personally presented by the Commander of the Brazilian Air Force, Antonio Carlos Moretti Bermudez. STOUT stands for Short Take Off Utility Transport (short takeoff transport aircraft).

It is assumed that the new aircraft will find application in both military and civil aviation and will be able to take off from small airfields. In the future, the new aircraft will have to replace the entire line of light turboprop military transport aircraft C-95 (Embraer EMB-110 Bandeirante) and C-97 (Embraer EMB-120 Brasilia) in the Brazilian Air Force, the fleet of which is now estimated at 83 units. These aircraft can already be attributed to obsolete aircraft, the average age of 63 C-95 aircraft is over 38 years, 19 C-97 aircraft - 26,5 years.

It should be noted that the project of the Brazilian aircraft manufacturer Embraer looks quite interesting and quite in the spirit of the times. Up to this point, electric motors were widely used only in the automotive industry. Currently, there is a real boom on the planet in the creation of electric vehicles, as well as vehicles with a hybrid power plant. Take Tesla alone with its founder Elon Musk, which has become the most expensive car company in the world. Just the other day, the company's capitalization exceeded $ 500 billion. Whether Embraer will be able to produce the world's first military transport aircraft with a hybrid power plant, only time will tell. So far, the promising aircraft is only at the concept stage, although it has attracted attention far beyond Brazil.

What is known about the new Brazilian project STOUT

Embraer is responsible for the development of the new aircraft for the Brazilian Air Force. It is currently one of the largest and perhaps the most famous Brazilian firm in the world. Embraer is a true aircraft conglomerate of companies that is the world's leader in regional passenger aircraft. This specialization allows the concern to create rather successful small military transport aircraft, as well as special aircraft for various purposes.

The company is currently fighting the Canadian Bombardier for the right to be considered the third largest aircraft manufacturer in the world after Airbus and Boeing. In addition to the passenger aircraft industry, it is actively developing its military projects, promoting products both to the domestic and foreign markets. In particular, Embraer has designed the Embraer C-390 twin-engine medium-range military transport aircraft. This 23-tonne tactical transporter is currently the largest aircraft in the Embraer line of aircraft.

In this case, история Embraer began with the EMB 110 Bandeirante light twin-engine turboprop passenger aircraft. Its military version was designated C-95. This first Embraer aircraft took to the skies back in 1968 and was mass-produced until 1991. Currently, various transport versions of this vehicle are still in service with the Brazilian Air Force.

It is clear that the Brazilian Air Force's light military transport aircraft fleet is in need of renewal. Realizing this, back in December 2019, the aircraft manufacturer and the Brazilian Air Force signed a joint memorandum to create a new promising light military transport aircraft. The new car should replace the C-95 and C-97. At the same time, in terms of its size and capabilities, it is closer to the more modern and large transport aircraft C-97.

The first presentation featuring visuals on the new military transport and commercial aircraft took place on November 13, 2020. Embraer acknowledges that the hybrid model unveiled by the military in November is the product of a memorandum signed in December 2019.

At the same time, there is still very little information on the project, it is obvious that it is at the very initial stage of implementation. The company is currently engaged in the preliminary design of a new aircraft within the framework of an agreement signed earlier with the Air Force.

Technical features of the STOUT hybrid aircraft

The new STOUT light military transport and commercial aircraft is being developed for use in poorly developed airfield infrastructure. The aircraft will be able to take off from short and narrow runways, as well as from poorly prepared runways. Operation from unpaved airfields is envisaged, which will allow the aircraft to be used in inaccessible corners of Brazil, primarily in the Amazon. The Amazon Basin is a hard-to-reach area with an abundance of rainforests and swamps. If the project is successfully implemented, the new Embraer aircraft will find application in other countries of Latin America. And it will also be able to enter the international market.

C-97 Brazilian Air Force

The main feature and feature of the aircraft is the presence of a hybrid power plant. The new aircraft will receive four engines, two of which will be traditional turboprop and two electric. Each of them will receive five-blade propellers. So far, the concept presented involves the placement of electric motors on the wingtips of the STOUT aircraft. The electric motors are powered by generators of turboprop motors.

The new four-engined dual-use light transport aircraft looks like a classic high-wing T-tail. An important difference from the C-95 (Embraer EMB-110 Bandeirante) and C-97 (Embraer EMB-120 Brasilia) aircraft will be the presence of a full-fledged rear ramp, which will facilitate the process of transporting cargo for various purposes, including pallets. It will also allow the aircraft to carry light wheeled vehicles in the cargo compartment. The use of a four-engine hybrid power plant should provide a promising aircraft with good thrust-to-weight ratio, as well as high takeoff and landing characteristics.

The new light military transport aircraft will be comparable in size to the C-97 model (length - 20 meters, height - 6,35 meters, wingspan - 19,78 meters). At the same time, the outwardly presented model is most similar to a proportionally reduced version of the C-390 Millennium medium military transport aircraft with a different power plant and a slightly modified chassis design.

It is assumed that for takeoff of a STOUT aircraft with a maximum load of three tons, runways with a length of 1 meters will be needed. At the same time, with a lower load, the aircraft can be operated from unpaved airfields with runways less than 200 meters. This is reported by the aviation Internet publication Cavok Brasil. According to the presentation presented by the Brazilian military, the new four-engine light military transport aircraft will be able to transport up to three tons of cargo over a distance of 1 km. It will also be able to accommodate 000 paratroopers or 2 paratroopers in full combat ammunition.

It has already been announced that the aircraft is initially developed in a transport version for the transport of goods (including on pallets) and paratroopers. Also on board can be installed special medical modules and medical equipment. The transport version of the aircraft with a hybrid power plant can be used by both military and civilian companies involved in cargo transportation.

In the future, a passenger version of STOUT can be created on the basis of this model. According to the Commander of the Brazilian Air Force:

"The new aircraft will be able to cover several operational needs of the military: the landing of paratroopers, the delivery of goods and personnel in the jungle, the transportation of the sick."

The largest Brazilian military transport aircraft C-390 Millennium. Photo: Matti Blume,

It is reported that Embraer, the government and representatives of the Brazilian Air Force expect to use the country's needs for a new light military transport aircraft to accelerate work on the creation of hybrid-electric aircraft.

According to a number of experts, such aircraft are a promising avenue for organizing commuter or regional passenger and cargo transportation due to the possible reduction in fuel and maintenance costs.

Also, these aircraft will have less negative impact on the environment.
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  1. dzvero
    dzvero 27 November 2020 18: 08
    What happens if one of the wingtip engines fails if the propeller does not get feathering?
    1. Avior
      Avior 27 November 2020 18: 26
      The same as with another aircraft in such a situation, apparently.
      Or nothing - there is an electric motor with minimal losses
      1. dzvero
        dzvero 27 November 2020 19: 57
        There, the drag due to the blades should increase. It’s the same as the end of the wing rested. Will deploy, in my opinion.
    2. pytar
      pytar 27 November 2020 19: 42
      What happens if one of the wingtip engines fails if the propeller does not get feathering?

      Automation will redirect part of the electricity generated by the second engine. As a result, the thrust is distributed more uniformly than in the classical scheme. In general, it would be more efficient if 2 turbo motors without propellers worked only on an electric generator + battery / to optimize power supply /, and the electric motors from the propellers were larger / 4-6 /! There will be no need for gearboxes, engines / it can even be diesel engines !! / will work at optimal conditions, without extreme loads. Benefits in durability, economy, and flight safety.
      1. StarTroopers
        StarTroopers 27 November 2020 22: 38
        Cons in complexity, price, weight and reliability, too many elements.
        1. pytar
          pytar 27 November 2020 23: 59
          There are always pros and cons! The development logic is similar to that of cars. For DVG came hybrids / at that level of STOUT /, the next will be fully electric planes. Not soon, much work remains to be done.
  2. Jacket in stock
    Jacket in stock 27 November 2020 18: 22
    Those. it turns out that the engines have so much excess power that in fact there is enough for two propellers at once.
    By the way, we seem to have written that they also make electric engines for airplanes, I wonder what the prospects are.
    And then how do you remember how much simple remotorization of the Il-114 is already dragging on .... :)))
  3. vadim dok
    vadim dok 27 November 2020 18: 48
    Embraer's capitalization is $ 500 billion, while Gazprom has less than $ 100 billion! How can this be?
    1. Freemason Mason
      Freemason Mason 27 November 2020 18: 58
      Where did you get this data? At the moment, the capitalization of Embraer is $ 6,2 billion, the capitalization of Gazprom is $ 58 billion.
      1. vadim dok
        vadim dok 27 November 2020 19: 24
        Well, I was not mistaken about Gazprom ($ 58 billion is less than $ 100 billion), but about the capitalization of Embraer, it is & 19,2 billion.
    2. Stirbjorn
      Stirbjorn 27 November 2020 20: 05
      Quote: vadim dok
      Embraer's capitalization is $ 500 billion, while Gazprom has less than $ 100 billion! How can this be?
      Tesla has 500 billion. Miller once promised a $ XNUMX trillion capitalization of Gazprom, but our top officials have a usual thing - "We promise to promise"
      1. mister-red
        mister-red 28 November 2020 01: 39
        Quote: Stirbjorn
        Tesla has 500 billion.

        Capitalization is a very ephemeral thing, it exists like a shark - as long as there is movement. Therefore, there is such a race.
        Say what's wrong. We look at the first 12 companies from the list by capitalization of the year 2000 and 2019.
        2000: Microsoft, General Electric, NTT DoCoMo, Cisco Systems, Wall-Mart Stores, Intel, NTT, Exxon Mobil, Lucent Tecnologies, Deutsche Telecom, Nokia, IBM
        2019: Saudi Aramco, Microsoft, Apple inc., Amazon Inc, Alphabet Inc (Google), Facebook, Alibaba Group, Tencent, Berkshire Hathaway Inc, Johnson & Johnson, Visa Inc., JPMorgan Chase
        In fact, only Microsoft retained its place in the top ten.
        And Tesla is not yet. And in 20 years it will be gone)
        I won't say anything about Microsoft, these may remain.
    3. The comment was deleted.
  4. Antifreeze
    Antifreeze 27 November 2020 18: 52
    It is somehow doubtful that such an innovation in the design, very unusual, will provide a jump in performance. But since they are ready to produce, then apparently everything has been calculated, including the commercial component. Let's take a look.
    1. iouris
      iouris 27 November 2020 21: 29
      Quote: Antifreeze
      apparently everything was calculated

      When in Brazil they launched what later turned out to be SSJ-100, they also calculated.
  5. Avior
    Avior 27 November 2020 19: 15
    It is not clear what the advantage is.
    The power of the two screws still does not exceed the power of the engine.
    If the batteries or monitors were standing and the electric motors were working during takeoff, it would be understandable that the takeoff run would be reduced, but two propellers actually work from one engine - one directly, the second through an electric transmission. And what does it give?
    1. Jacket in stock
      Jacket in stock 27 November 2020 19: 18
      Quote: Avior
      If batteries or monitors were

      Or maybe they are, it's just that they didn't describe everything in detail here.
  6. Ros 56
    Ros 56 27 November 2020 19: 37
    Frankly, I can't figure it out, but what the hell do you need an extra transmission link with corresponding power losses and an additional possibility of equipment failure. I understand the need for this in diesel locomotives and mining dump trucks, and in airplanes fellow request what
    1. Aviator_
      Aviator_ 27 November 2020 20: 17
      The calculation is apparently on the fact that the electric motor is lighter than the HPT. The layout must have been calculated. I wonder what happens in the end.
      1. iouris
        iouris 27 November 2020 21: 30
        Quote: Aviator_
        I wonder what happens in the end.

        I don't think they'll succeed.
    2. ProkletyiPirat
      ProkletyiPirat 27 November 2020 22: 27
      Well, in general, the main feature is POSSIBLE lower fuel consumption relative to the turbojet engine, that is, theoretically, there is a reserve, but how to achieve it in practice is a completely different question ... go beyond these limits, the efficiency drops sharply, and as you know, aircraft often go beyond the limits, especially for the military in the form of faster descents / ascents or flights at not ideal altitudes / speeds ...
    3. Svetlana
      Svetlana 27 November 2020 22: 59
      Quote: Ros 56
      but on planes

      This is necessary to increase the traction force of the screws. In the NK-12MV engine of the TU-95 aircraft, coaxial propellers are used to increase the thrust force. But the rear coaxial rotor operates in the air flow created by the front coaxial rotor. It is known that with an increase in aircraft speed, propellers lose efficiency. In a Brazilian aircraft with a hybrid power plant, there is no alignment. There is also no differential planetary gearbox. Therefore, the reliability of the propulsion system increases, and the efficiency of the propeller thrust generation increases.
  7. Ryaruav
    Ryaruav 27 November 2020 19: 53
    a disgrace for Putin's Russia where everything will only be in years from now?
  8. Mikhail S.
    Mikhail S. 27 November 2020 22: 08
    If the electric motors at the ends are rotary, like a tiltrotor, then the takeoff speed and strip length
    in principle can be reduced.
    1. Alexander Vorontsov
      Alexander Vorontsov 27 November 2020 22: 33
      Quote: Mikhail S.
      can be reduced.

      The ratio of wing area to propellers is different.
      The aircraft has a lift due to the wing, i.e. oncoming flow.

      If you try to lift with the screws, it will reduce the oncoming flow and at the same time create resistance to the upward movement due to the wing.

      If you change the ratio, then in the end the tiltrotor will work out)
  9. Hanurik
    Hanurik 28 November 2020 15: 07
    Why was Musk named in the article the founder of Tesla?
  10. 911sx
    911sx 28 November 2020 22: 30
    An incomprehensible desire to thrust automotive technology into the plane. In a car, an electric motor recuperates energy (when braking, the battery is filled), which gives a benefit to the engine-battery-engine system. How can this be implemented in aviation? Solar-powered aviation is another matter, but this is true for a high-altitude, low-speed UAV. With a transport worker, it's not very clear.
    1. The eye of the crying
      The eye of the crying 5 January 2021 19: 55
      Quote: 911sx
      An incomprehensible desire to thrust automotive technology into the plane.

      It's more of a ship technology (similar to an IEP).

      Quote: 911sx
      engine - battery - engine

      The article does not mention the presence of a battery.