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Delta_Lantanoir t1_j7x5e2y wrote

It isn't an airplane or jet either though. I don't think there is a real category for a "jet wing". But, it's a bit closer to a helicopter in that its lift is generated by its engines which is similar to how a rotary wing gets lift from the main rotor(s) which is/are directly powered by the engine. On a fixed wing aircraft, the propeller(s) or jet engine(s) give it speed, but do little to nothing for lift. That is why (without major modifications) fixed wing aircraft don't have VTOL capabilities. (For simplicity, we are going to ignore special cases like the Ospry.) All of the lift comes from the wings on a fixed wing aircraft. The engine(s) is/are there to give enough speed to the aircraft for the wings to do their job. That is not how the Orca works. It is true it is not quite a helicopter in that a helicopter is a rotory wing aircraft, but overall, the physics of how it flies would be much more in line with a helicopter than an airplane.


Defiant-Peace-493 t1_j7x7mv2 wrote

Interesting, it looks like it got major revisions through the series. The first one I found ("I know I remember an Orca Gunship from somewhere" phase) has sort-of stub wings, fixed fans in the wings (takeoff assist?), and what I think are pivotable jets (TW vintage). Older TD style, as you say, is pretty much a heli form factor aside from the turbofans. One of the developers is Lancaster Lifting Body, which might imply that the hull is an airfoil, which could push it back towards plane.

I assume this has been discussed several times by now in the community!