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Plane & Pilot Photos! Of The Week: V-22 Osprey Art, Science . . . And Conspiracy Theory?

This week’s photo is not one, but TWO photos of the week! One is a brilliant shot of the V-22 Osprey in hover with prop-tip vortices in full Rembrandt mode, and the other is of the prop tips lit up at night with green tip lights. And you’d better believe that we’ve got video too!

V-22 Osprey. Photo by Peter Groneman via flickr
V-22 Osprey. Photo by Peter Groneman via flickr

This week’s Plane & Pilot Photo Of The Week is a great shot by Peter Groneman of a Bell-Boeing V-22 Osprey in hover mode with the prop tips painting the sky with spiral slipstreams of condensation. We’ve also got the super slo-mo video that gives you a closer look at it happening in the wild.

Groneman took the shot years ago at a British Air Show, the 2012 Royal International Tattoo, which is, yes, what some air shows are actually called (see our Plane Facts on air shows if you don’t believe us!). The shot isn’t new, but this video, which shows the Osprey lifting off, is, and it’s really, really cool.

The Bell-Boeing V-22 Osprey is a wonder, a huge, 50,000-plus-pound vertical take-off helicopter that transforms into a go-fast twin turboprop as its rotors tilt into airplane mode. How fast? 275 knots! Plus it can carry 24 troops and cruise along for 390 nm in combat mode or better than 2,200 nm in ferry mode! Enough, we want one too!

The props themselves are, to use the aerodynamically accurate term, humungoid, 38 feet in diameter apiece, and they rotate when in hover mode at around 400-500 rpm. At night, as you see in this photo [they have green tip lights that are clearly visible to create an eerie and undeniably awesome visual.

V-22 Osprey
V-22 Osprey. Photo by Chief Petty Officer Joe Kane (U.S. Navy)

The video is big on the Internet right now, and commenters are having a blast, with some discussing, tongues firmly in cheek, the efficiency of the chemtrail-distributing qualities of the prop tip spreaders, and others practicing adult behavior while deriving the shutter speed of the camera  (an iPhone 11 Max, it turns out) from the speed of the tips, which are captured remarkably without any of that weird bendy prop artifacts or stopping of them either. To paraphrase some old story, this camera setting is just right.

Check it out, and enjoy!



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