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Overair receives US Navy contract for individual blade control eVTOL technology development

Overair, developer of all-electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft, today announced the United States Navy has awarded Overair a Small Business Innovative Research (SBIR) contract to further develop the high-integrity individual blade control (IBC) technology integrated into its Butterfly eVTOL aircraft. Under the agreement, Overair will advance the IBC system for potential Navy use with a specific focus on safety-critical architecture.

“The innovative IBC system will enable segment-leading performance for Overair’s Butterfly and, in the future, may also provide new frontiers for the U.S. Navy, which is focusing its support on Overair’s unique trajectory-based control scheme in conjunction with a fault tolerant, multi-channel digital communications network,” said the company in a press release. “The research and technology is expected to help future military rotorcraft become more damage-resistant and reliable in combat.

“Overair’s IBC technology significantly reduces vibration, extends component life, and improves safety and ride quality,” said the company. “Overair’s Butterfly eVTOL uniquely enables full-authority IBC, a feature absent in current certified commercial and military rotorcraft. Paired with its advanced Optimum Speed Tiltrotor (OSTR) propulsion system-rotors, Butterfly also delivers unparalleled noise reduction.”

“The list of potential benefits derived from IBC technology is long, but the challenges of practical implementation have, to date, prevented its adoption into production rotorcraft. This SBIR is intended to help move the needle towards the realization of IBC in the next generation of rotorcraft,” noted NAVAIR Aeromechanics Senior Engineer, Matt Rhinehart.

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