In today’s world, we just take for granted that helicopters are a common, everyday mode of air transportation. In fact, there are at least 3 generations of people today who cannot remember a time without helicopters, they are that common. It was during the Vietnam War that saw helicopters come in to their own, as not only a mode of troop transportation, but as attack aircraft as well. Today, we use helicopters for just about anything, from medical & personnel transport, fire fighting, to cargo transport, helicopters are a common sight. In fact, if you can afford one, you can own your own helicopter as a mode of transportation.
Wikipedia says this about the helicopter:
A helicopter is a type of rotorcraft in which lift and thrust are supplied by horizontally-spinning rotors. This allows the helicopter to take off and land vertically, to hover, and to fly forward, backward and laterally. These attributes allow helicopters to be used in congested or isolated areas where fixed-wing aircraft and many forms of VTOL (Vertical Take-Off and Landing) aircraft cannot perform.
In 1942 the Sikorsky R-4 became the first helicopter to reach full-scale production. Although most earlier designs used more than one main rotor, the configuration of a single main rotor (monocopter) accompanied by a vertical anti-torque tail rotor has become the most common helicopter configuration.
Twin-main rotor helicopters (bicopters), in either tandem or transverse rotors configurations, are also in use due to their greater payload capacity than the monorotor design. Coaxial-rotor helicopters, tiltrotor aircraft, and compound helicopters are all flying today. Quadrotor helicopters (quadcopters) were pioneered as early as 1907 in France, and other types of multicopters have been developed for specialized applications such as drones.
And now in the 21st century, we will see more development of this particular aircraft and in the video below, you’ll see some really cool futuristic designs that we should be seeing in the skies very soon.
H/T – Wikipedia