An unusual prototype with circular wing in parasol configuration, built in 1934 became a successful STOL airplane, making the way to circular wing aircraft such as the Flying Pancake the AvroCar among others.
Using a fuselage from an Alliance Argo biplane and powered by a 90 hp Lambert engine. The media at that moment wrote about the plane with nice publicity, and the small features that the plane had, reporting the “parachute plane”. You could store the plane in a hangar about the size of a large garage.
The plane was easy to be flown, according to Nemeth, and anyone who had never flown a plane could learn to fly it in 30 minutes. In the flight test, the airplane reached up to 135 mph making this aircraft an outstanding one. Nemeth stalled the plane in mid-flight, and the plane made the work of a parachute due to the rounded wing, with the engine-off, it descended “almost vertically” according to a 1934 report from Popular Science.
This aircraft was able to provide flight test data and demonstration of control at low speeds. It was compared to autogyros tested at that time. Due to near-parachute landing and the full control the pilot had, it helped to understand this type of low speed flight, problems that engineers like Juan de la Cierva was studying for years.
The Nemeth parasol program only had one model constructed or prototype. Despite the well performance, nice flight features the plane had, there were no more tests or updates related to this aircraft.
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It’s great to see somebody writing about aircraft history! Juan de la Cierva was one of the few gyrocopter pioneers, and his work had more influence on the modern helicopter than one would think!