Kaman chief test pilot F. Andrew Foster prepares for tests of the SAVER flight rig. The white portions of the machine, plus the rotor blades and engine, are the seat in its deployed mode. The controls for the test vehicle differed from those of the final proposed version, which was to be fitted with a small side-mounted control stick.
The Kaman SAVER has recently been flight tested in the configuration shown. Claimed to be the world's first jet-powered autogyro, SAVER is an aerial escape and rescue capability (AERCAB) vehicle funded by the US Navy and is intended to provide a fighter's standard ejection seat with the ability to fly a considerable distance if an ejection is made over enemy territory.
After concluding that the concept was technically feasible as a result of windtunnel testing, the SAVER seat was attached to a steel frame for further testing under the supervision of the Naval Air Development Center (NADC). It is seen here with the final telescopic rotor, the hub of which, with a common flapping coning Delta 3 hinge offset by 3in.
The Kaman SAVER seat in its stowed position at the windtunnel at NASA's Ames Research Center. The rotor blades are coned upwards from the hub mounted on an A-frame, which hinges rearward to store the blades behind the seat.
The Kaman SAVER turbofan-powered autogyro was one of three projects developed for the American military’s AERCAB programme, and was the subject of a typically dynamic illustration by Fred L. Wolff to accompany an article on the concept in the September 1969 issue of Popular Mechanics.