The Birth of VTOL
Play • 51 min

Welcome to Shephard Studio’s Revolutions in Vertical Flight, brought to you in partnership with Bell.

The Revolutions in Vertical Flight podcast tells the little-known story of the history of rotorcraft, from the autogiro and helicopter, to the tiltrotor and eVTOL platforms in development today. 

Revolutions in Vertical Flight reveals the stories of a small group of pioneers, the visions and beliefs that drove them, and their approach to invention and innovation.

And the Shephard Studio podcast series looks at the vertical flight innovation underway today, revealing how it will transform military operations and revolutionise urban mobility.

In this episode, we go back to the beginning and look at how the work of a Spanish engineer to perfect his autogiro design helped pave the way for the development of the helicopter.

We speak to Sergei Sikorsky about his memories of his father’s pioneering work creating the first successful helicopter design. And we hear how Frank Piasecki’s ground-breaking tandem rotor design helped the helicopter to revolutionise military operations.

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