A modern, closed-cabin, pusher-propeller autogyro in flight. Photo: Wikipedia.

What is an Autogyro, Gyroplane or Gyrocopter?

Regia Marinho
4 min readDec 22, 2021


An autogyro, or a gyroplane or gyrocopter, is a type of rotorcraft, a transportation mode.

With a few modern tweaks, the autogyro could make a return to the sky.

An autogyro, or a gyroplane or gyrocopter, is a type of rotorcraft that uses an unpowered rotor in free autorotation to develop lift.

And, forward thrust is provided independently, by an engine-driven propeller.

A helicopter uses an engine to power its spinning rotor blades.

A gyroplane’s upper rotor blades and aren’t powered by an engine.


The autogyro was invented by Spanish engineer Juan de la Cierva in an attempt to create an aircraft that could fly safely at low speeds.

He first flew one on 9 January 1923, at Cuatro Vientos Airfield in Madrid.

The aircraft resembled the fixed-wing aircraft of the day, with a front-mounted engine and propeller.

The autogyro is considered the predecessor of the modern helicopter.

In 1912 De la Cierva started building the aircraft.

In 1914 he designed and built a tri-motor airplane which was accepted by the Spanish government.



Regia Marinho

I write about ideas, technology, the future and inspire the world through art. Artist. Civil engineer. https://regiaart.com