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From this revelation Cierva devel- oped and patented the flapping rotor blade which was allowed to move up and down by means of a hinge in the rotor head. This solved dissymmetry of lift. A freely flapping blade had been developed and patented in France and Germany prior to Cierva. However, there is no evidence that Cierva knew of this prior work and he is widely considered to have reached his discoveries independ- ently (Charnov, 2003). Cierva’s fourth full scale design, the C.4, was the first aircraft to successfully incorporate the flapping hinge.


ROTORCRAFTPROFESSIONAL


The body of the C.4 was a Hanriot scout biplane from World War I powered by a Le Rhone rotary engine. The rotor head incorpo- rated flapping hinges on four blades. The aircraft was controlled by control surfaces on a set of wings and a tail rudder, similar to a fixed wing aircraft (Gablehouse, 1967). The first successful Autogiro flight


was achieved on January 9, 1293 at the Getafe Airdrome outside of Madrid.


This new aircraft quickly gained attention in Europe. Cierva even trademarked the term Autogiro, which is still used world- wide to describe any autorotational aircraft made by Cierva or under license. Several new Autogiro


IN 1937, THE ARMY BOUGHT SEVEN MORE AUTOGYROS


AND GREGORY WAS CHOSEN TO HEAD UP A NEW SCHOOL TO TRAIN THE PILOTS NEEDED FOR A MORE EXTENSIVE AUTOGYRO TEST AND EVALUATION PROGRAM.


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