The ZHZ TD220 is an Unmanned Helicopter System (UHS) developed by Zhong-Hang-Zhi (ZHZ) Science and Technology, Ltd of China. The type is an evolution of a series of drone helicopters that includes the earlier "TC" model. Both are of coaxial main blade rotor design, meaning a pair of main rotors are seated atop one another along a shared mast in the arrangement, offering notable stability and control. A key quality of the system is its Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL) capabilities mimicking that of a conventional helicopter - this gives the UAS a considerably smaller footprint than a fixed-wing drone allowing it to operate where such types cannot.
The general layout of the aircraft is consistent with other market UHSs; the main rotors are fitted over the fuselage in the usual way and a four-point fixed skid assembly braces the body against the ground when landing/taking off. A pair of vertical fins are positioned at the tail for the needed control when airborne. An optics-laden traversable "blister" assembly is seated at the "chin" position of the aircraft allowing for unfettered views of the terrain ahead and below the aircraft. The conventionally-minded engine is buried within the design, driving power to the two main rotor blade assemblies seated in a coaxial arrangement.
The primary benefit of the stacked/twin main rotor units is the deleting of a tail rotor unit traditionally used to counter torque forces generated by a single mounting. When compared to leading coaxial blade developers, such as Russia's own Kamov design bureau, the ZHZ approach to its coaxial blade assembly is simplified by way of electrically-driven components (as opposed to mechanical), lowering costs while retaining all of the inherent benefits.
The TD220 sports a rotor diameter of 3.9 meters with a fuselage length of 2.48 meters and a total system height of 1.78 meters. Empty weight is 140 kilograms against an MTOW of nearly 300 kg. The helicopter can carry a payload up to 100 kg in weight up to an altitude of 4 kilometers and has a five-hour endurance window while cruising at speeds of 100 kmh. Power is supplied by a single gasoline- or kerosene-fueled engine of 65 horsepower.
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
✓Special-Mission: Search & Rescue (SAR)
Ability to locate and extract personnel from areas of potential harm or peril (i.e. downed airmen in the sea).
✓Intelligence-Surveillance-Reconnaissance (ISR), Scout
Surveil ground targets / target areas to assess environmental threat levels, enemy strength, or enemy movement.
Aircraft inherently designed (or later developed) with an unmanned capability to cover a variety of over-battlefield roles.
Inherent ability of airframe to take considerable damage.
Design features ability to fly sans pilot, actions controlled onboard through programming and / or ground-based operator.
Payload supports photographic equipment providing still and / or real-time image / video results.
8.1 ft (2.48 m)
13.0 ft (3.96 m)
5.8 ft (1.78 m)
309 lb (140 kg)
639 lb (290 kg)
+331 lb (+150 kg)
(Showcased structural values pertain to the base ZHZ TD220 production variant)
1 x Gasoline- / kerosene-fueled conventional engine developing 65 horsepower driving 2 x Two-bladed main rotor units in coaxial arrangement atop the fuselage.
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