Vertipedia is a product of the Vertical Flight Society. With data on 861 aircraft, 613 historical milestones, 474 people, and 393 organizations, Vertipedia is your "one-stop shop" for all things vertical lift.

1935 - First practical use of cyclic pitch (Hafner A.R.III)

1969 - First flight of the prototype of the Mil Mi-24 Type series

Our latest featured aircraft for September is the Cierva W.11 Air Horse .


The aircraft was designed to provide viable heavy load lifting capability for commercial operations. It employed 3 main rotors all rotating in the same direction. Torque offset was provided by thrust components from the 3 rotors through built-in shaft tilt. The aircraft had a semi-monoquoque structure, a single engine, and a long-stroke undercarriage (5ft) to cope with high rates of descent.  A description of the aircraft and its characteristics can be found in the following references,

Source: "The Cierva W-11 Air Horse", J. Gordon Leishman, VERTIFLITE Spring 2003, Page 52

Source: "Discussing the Helicopter", FLIGHT Staff, FLIGHT, December 2nd 1948, Pages 665-668

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Vertipedia notes are brief descriptions of how and why Vertipedia works the way it does. Check back often for the latest note, or view the complete list.

What aircraft can be added into Vertipedia?

Vertipedia has been built specifically to be a source of reference information. It is not a vehicle for promotional or marketing information. The Vertipedia team decided that limiting the data to aircraft that have actually flown would be an unambiguous way to limit the scope of the data included. There is also a minimum gross weight limit of 500lb. There are many important historical projects that never flew but there has to be some clear, defining rule about what to include or not.


Vertipedia makes it easy for you to find a range of information on vertical flight, including:

  • Targeted searches of documents provided by the Vertical Flight Society, as well as public sources from across the internet
  • Important milestones that have helped shape the history of vertical flight
  • People who have played a role in vertical flight
  • Vertical flight aircraft, such as helicopters, tilt rotors and tilt wings, jet-lift VTOL, and more.

Select a module below to get started!