LTV XC-142A: Transitions are hard to do.

The stubby XC-142A was a 1960s four-engined experimental tilt-wing cargo convertiplane developed jointly by Vought, Ryan and Hiller for the American three main military services . Conventional in appearance at first sight -those kinda distorted proportions apart- to allow VTOL performances, the XC-142A’s entire wing with its four GE T64 turboprops was designed to rotate in conjunction with the horizontal tail. A tail rotor provided low speed control and trim. First flown in 1964, the five aircraft built worked pretty well, certainly up to the tasks envisaged. Despite all that, the design was nevertheless not placed in production: it was too complex and helicopters were more economical.

The XC-142A in a nutshell in this descriptive photo montage.

Photo: Peter M. Bowers Collection.

5 thoughts on “LTV XC-142A: Transitions are hard to do.

  1. Interesting airplane! I’d say for convertiplanes and other tilting wing or tilting propellers machines, an easier arrangement may be turbines inside fuselage, driving an electric generator, and electric engines on wings to provide lift and thrust. Electric engines are more reliable, perhaps lighter, a big advantage in things placed on wing. Salut +

  2. Of course, the Osprey was the final outcome of all these test planes. Unfortunately, a lot of men gave their lives to get it into production! 4 aircraft lost during the protractive testing, with 30 fatalities.

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