I'm fond of ultralight flying and stumbled over the SF-1 Archon site.

Specifications for more details.

I found it very appealing as an ultralight and feel like flying it even though i don't have any prior experience with pusher configuration.

I have never heard of the FFA (flying fuselage aircraft) concept so far. My knowledge is rather limited to basic conventional aircraft where the fuselage is considered to neutral by design.

Can someone expand on it please?

  • $\begingroup$ One day with SF/1 Archon video on youtube $\endgroup$
    – menjaraz
    Commented Mar 21, 2014 at 9:01
  • $\begingroup$ Excerpt from a forum: "basically a Fat Ultralight, with a Rotax 503 ( about 50 hp) 2 stroke in a semi-duct with a full sized prop." $\endgroup$
    – menjaraz
    Commented Apr 8, 2014 at 8:26

2 Answers 2


I found this off the website after some searching:

The advantages of the flying fuselage aircraft (FFA) category, compared to conventional aircraft (CA) category and flying body aircraft (FBA) category, are the following:

In conventional aircraft design, the fuselage is aerodynamically neutral and joins only the separate parts of the aircraft. As the wings grow the buoyancy grows as well. In the flying body aircrafts, aerodynamic lift is produced only on the outside of the fuselage and the wings, which comprise a unite body. As the fuselage and wings grow, the generated lift becomes greater. In the flying fuselage aircraft the extra lift is generated from the interior of the fuselage and from the whole aircraft in and out. Thus, maximizing the full extent of the aerodynamic performance of the aircraft. Practically, the new category of the flying fuselage has the following advantages compared to the other categories above. i) because of the greater generated lift ,the aircraft is designed smaller in size, in order to have the same performance as its peers.

ii) due to the smaller dimensions of the aircraft, it occupies less space and needs a smaller hangar. (cost reduction).

iii) the most important advantage is that during the flight in conventional and flying body aircrafts, stability comes only from the main wings dihedral, as well as the size of caudal. The flying fuselage design acts as a funnel and provides extra stability to the aircraft, making the air mass passing through the fuselage in a column of air (air shaft). This is maximizing the stability of the aircraft in all angles and phases of flight. Source

So what I think what they're trying to say is that the body generates lift as well. It sounds mostly like something like a blended wing body or lifting body in my opinion as a meeting point between a conventional and flying wing aircraft. In any case, the term FFA seems very uncommon and not widely used.

SF-1 http://www.aerosports.gr/images/photos_gallery/archonSF1/4.jpg

The closest similar thing I've found was this aircraft. The F-22 Raptor which it seems to closely mimic is not considered a flying wing nor a blended wing body, and after looking at the fuselage I remained a little unconvinced that it generates substantial lift as a body due to the substantial upper structure and lower structure.

  • $\begingroup$ This sounds very enthusiastic but some factual evidence would be great to support the (rather optimistic ) claims. Mind you, seems like a fun machine! $\endgroup$
    – yankeekilo
    Commented Feb 16, 2014 at 13:03
  • $\begingroup$ The key seems to be "In the flying fuselage aircraft the extra lift is generated from the interior of the fuselage and from the whole aircraft in and out." - it basically implies that the whole thing is a sort of ducted fan / ducted airfoil. $\endgroup$
    – egid
    Commented Feb 16, 2014 at 18:08
  • $\begingroup$ indeed, ducted fun makes more sense. $\endgroup$
    – menjaraz
    Commented Feb 17, 2014 at 3:25
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ @menjaraz Yes, the front picture shows two very large ducts on the sides of the fuselage. Makes me wonder about the drag... $\endgroup$ Commented Oct 18, 2015 at 6:48
  • $\begingroup$ The F-22 is definitely a blended wing-body (as are most fighter aircraft since the 1970s, for that matter). $\endgroup$
    – Vikki
    Commented Oct 8, 2019 at 3:37

"Flying Fuselage" is kind of a buzzword for this aircraft, as far as I know. Normally they're called Lifting Body aircraft. The point is to make the fuselage generate lift by shaping it somewhat like a wing. The ones on the wiki page generate 75% or more of their lift with the fuselage alone, but they don't have to; for example, the Piaggio Avanti's fuselage generates a good bit of lift, allowing its wings to be shorter. An example on the extreme opposite side would be the Apollo crew capsules. If necessary, they could be angled in such a way that the capsule produced lift while it flew through the extreme upper atmosphere. This allowed them to adjust their re-entry trajectory without having to carry fuel or wings.

  • $\begingroup$ I'm afraid, it has nothing to do with lifting body aircraft. I know of the Facetmobile (powered with a rotax 503) and i am firmly convinced that a lifting body ultralight should look alike $\endgroup$
    – menjaraz
    Commented Feb 16, 2014 at 10:36

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