Magenn Power draws on over 28 years of research and development in advance materials and structure. It all began with designing the Magnus Spherical Airship starting in 1978.
1978 Magnus Spherical Airship Development & Demo
1983 Westland Helicopters Contract to Validate / Build Full Scale Model
1984 Canadian Award for Excellence in Invention
1987 Multi-Sphere Airship Development
1989 LEAP Project Initiated
1992 Fed Ex / Lockheed Contract; Lockheed Validates Av-Intel’s Cargo Airship System
1993 High Altitude Platform Contract with Vistar
1995 Joint Chiefs of Staff Request for Proposal
1997 High Altitude Platform Commercial Contract & Spec. Development
1999 Flight Tests in Mexico
2003 Conceptual Development and patenting
2004 Magenn Power is incorporated
2005 Magenn Power Applies for World-wide Patents
2006 MARS prototype building, Computational Fluid Dynamic Simulation
2007 Build Production Ready Prototypes, first sales
CONTRACTORS & AGENCIES
Fred Ferguson has worked with: Lockheed, Fed Ex, Vistar, NASA-JPL, Lear Astronics, CNES (France), JCS, SDIO, DARPA, Texas A&M;
About Magenn Power
Fred Ferguson (founder of Magenn Power) patented the Magnus Airship in the 1980s. This unique airship utilized the Magnus effect for the first time in lighter-than-air craft. This Magnus Airship was a large spherical envelope filled with helium to achieve static, buoyant lift. As the sphere rotated during forward motion, Magnus lift was generated proportional to the airspeed flowing over the sphere; the faster the vehicle, the higher the Magnus lift.
The huge sphere rotated backwards as the craft flew forward. The resulting lift at cruise speed was greater than the total buoyant lift which could be up to 60 tons payload depending upon the final production size. For the Magnus airship and hence the patented Magenn Air Rotors System, we have proven that as wind speed increases, rotation increases, lift increases, drag will be minimized because of reduced leaning, and stability increases.
Canadian Star Wars contract – This airship design was fully patented world-wide and was developed over a decade at a cost of $20 million. It won the Canadian Government Award of Excellence in 1984. And the Philip Petroleum Award for Science 1985. The Smithsonian Institute requested the prototype which was unfortunately destroyed in an accident.
Over 160 wind tunnel tests were conducted by our engineers and aerodynamicists at the Institute for Aerospace Studies, University of Toronto, under the Direction of Dr. James DeLaurier, Department Head. Further smoke tunnel tests were documented at the Carleton University aerodynamic smoke tunnel lab under the direction of Dr. Morley O’Neil.
In the early 1990’s, Fred Ferguson then formed Av-Intel Inc., a small private company with a group of prominent financiers from US industry. AV-Intel represents fully patented airship technologies. Av-Intel’s research has shown that a modern long fineness ratio airship is substantially more load and cost efficient than equivalent payload shorter blimp-like airships. However, history has shown that all past long fineness ratio rigid airships had inherent structural inadequacies, many resulting in catastrophic failures. The Av-Intel series of airships has correctly analyzed and isolated the inadequacies of the past era. The Av-Intel airship design advances the current state-of-the-art for ultra-large pressure airships. The overall result is a fineness ratio in excess of 8:1 which provides a minimal cross section and cost relative to load capability.
The new Av-Intel airships encompass an advanced new technology that divides the long cigar-shaped airship into sections or segments that act similar to a huge shock absorber. In simulation studies contracted to the Lockheed Advanced Development Corporation, Av-Intel’s design proved to exceed the current requirements for safety and gust loading by a broad positive margin. Other contractual analysis included extensive loads versus economic analysis utilizing the Texas A&M; wind tunnel, structural envelope design evaluation at France’s CNES, and froude scale flying prototypes, the latest of which have been tested to 10,000-ft altitude. Commercial Market studies were conducted by Federal Express and American President Lines which show the Av-Intel Cargo Airship efficiency is based upon projected technical and economic performance features.
The Av-Intel airship patents also include the correct positioning of propulsion for controlled low speed flight, and precision low speed crosswind maneuvers. The propulsion design includes off-the-shelf technologies and does not require new rotational or gear box systems. The first commercial prototype planned is similar to the aerodynamic design of the historical US dirigible, “The Shenandoah” and will be built for a net payload of 40 tons. The larger airship sizes as anticipated by the past FedEx-LADC assessment include net payloads up to 500 tons.
Av-Intel’s patents define the overall core design and technological breakthroughs that will bring about an economical new transportation business using airships. This technology is directly related to the MAGENN series of lighter-than-air rotors via the cylindrical structure (from the segmented airship design) and the Magnus effect (from the Magnus Rotating Sphere). Also related are MagennŐs design and management expertise as well as the companyŐs patent evolution. This leads us to today where the MARS is the result of more than 27 years of design, development, and verification. These efforts coupled with ongoing testing entail an extensive risk reduction program that provides credibility.
Magenn Power has built and tested several small prototypes in 2006 and will continue to do so until the final MARS 4kW system is ready in 2007.
Computational Fluid Dynamic Simulation allows Magenn Power to simulate various designs quickly and efficiently without the need to build or test hundreds of prototypes in an actual wind tunnel.
Frontal View of the physical Magenn Air Rotor
Side View of MARS
IsoView of MARS
Air envelope parts encasing the rotor.
Speed is shown with a different coloring scheme and scale (blue is lowest flow, red is highest flow) for qualitative purposes in the x-z plane.
The rotor itself is again shaded with speed, while now all three principle slices are visualized with velocity vectors.