Aircraft

CityHawk VTOL to be developed as an aerial EMS vehicle

CityHawk VTOL to be developed ...
A CityHawk ambulance arrives at an accident scene
A CityHawk ambulance arrives at an accident scene
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A CityHawk ambulance arrives at an accident scene
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A CityHawk ambulance arrives at an accident scene
A patient is loaded aboard the CityHawk
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A patient is loaded aboard the CityHawk
The non-EMS version of the CityHawk
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The non-EMS version of the CityHawk
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Although "air ambulance" helicopters certainly are life-savers, the things typically can't land in the middle of crowded city streets. The CityHawk aircraft conceivably could, though, which is why it's now being developed with emergency medical response (EMS) in mind.

Designed by Israeli firm Urban Aeronautics, the CityHawk is essentially a compact civilian version of the company's Cormorant military VTOL (vertical take-off and landing) aircraft.

The latter already exists in functioning prototype form, utilizing internal rotor blades to move vertically. This means that unlike the case with a helicopter, there's no chance of the ends of those blades whacking against things like buildings, cars or people while the aircraft takes off and lands in confined spaces. A pair of shrouded propellers in the rear move the Cormorant forward, once it's reached cruising altitude.

The non-EMS version of the CityHawk
The non-EMS version of the CityHawk

The CityHawk variant – which has yet to reach the prototype phase – does away with the rear props. Instead, it features two turboshaft-powered horizontal fans located in the front and rear of the aircraft. Utilizing tiltable vanes on the inlet and outlet sides, these will move it both vertically and horizontally.

Plans call for the CityHawk to weigh 1,170 kg (2,580 lb), be capable of carrying up to 760 kg (1,670 lb), have a maximum speed of 270 km/h (168 mph) and a fuel range of 150 km (93 mi) if carrying a pilot and four passengers – that climbs to 360 km (224 mi) for a pilot-only flight.

Earlier this year, Urban Aeronautics revealed that it was developing a longer-range, hydrogen-fuel-cell-powered version of the vehicle. This week, though, it was additionally announced that the company has signed a memorandum of understanding with EMS aviation firm Hatzolah Air to develop, produce, and market the aircraft for emergency medical service usage.

A patient is loaded aboard the CityHawk
A patient is loaded aboard the CityHawk

This doesn't come as a huge surprise, since right from the inception of the CityHawk, one of its proposed uses was medical evacuation. The new deal will focus attention on that application, although the aircraft should also still see use as an air taxi or private "flying car." That said, the EMS version could certainly prove to be a popular model.

"Based on our initial estimates, we foresee a potential market of at least 800 CityHawks for Hatzolah and other EMS operators, with the possibility to save thousands of lives every year," says Hatzolah Air president Eli Rowe.

Source: Urban Aeronautics

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2 comments
History Nut
Retired after 28 years of ambulance work. I am glad to see this concept being explored. The greatest delays and highest hazards of ambulance work were getting through traffic. I have been in around 20 ambulance accidents and suffered many delays due to traffic. My concern with this design would be noise and air 'blast' when landing and taking off. The ride would be smoother though.
Towerman
Excellent, this VTOL needs to be developed soon ! One of the most unique and interesting designs with exceptional practicality.