Jane's Encyclopedia of Aviation
Aerospatiale N 500 (France)
Small single-seat VTOL research aircraft intended primarily to evaluate the flight principles of the tilting-duct concept. The prototype was completed in 1967 and made its first tethered flight in July 1968.
Nord's 500 represented the minimalist route to tilt ducted fan research, employing two 317shp Allison T63-A-5A turboshafts. Similar in concept to two earlier American machines, the Doak 16 and Bell Aerosystems X-22A, the Nord 500 went one stage further by embodying a shutter system at the rear of its ducted fans in an endeavour to enhance hover performance by controlling airflow expansion. Two Nord 550s were built, the first in early 1967, followed in 1968 by the second, seen here undergoing tethered tests on 23 July 1968 with Armand Jacquet at the controls. Overall stability problems may have led to the abandonment of this programme.
Nord 500 Cadet ducted-propeller research aircraft