Lift + Cruise Transitions for eVTOLs

Dean Sigler Announcements, Electric Powerplants, Hybrid Aircraft, Sky Taxis, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

A New Mission Some formerly rotor-only eVTOLs are transitioning to a new configuration – one with wings for greater range and speed.  Vertical takeoffs and landings are OK for short-range Urban Air Mobility (UAM), but not necessarily good for longer range flight.  Hovering flight requires thrust equal to the weight of the vehicle, and climbing requires additional thrust.  Switching to wing-borne flight reduces the power necessary and increases flight duration. Some trends in housing and commutes indicate longer, regional flights may be necessary to fetch workers from ever more far-flung homes.  Purely rotor-borne flight will still be viable for short trips with batteries, but wings add speed and endurance. VoloConnect Volocopter, having started with a simple multi-rotor prototype 10 years …

Multicopters Growing Wings

Dean Sigler Announcements, Hybrid Aircraft, Sky Taxis, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

eHang and Volocopter are growing wings on their eVTOL (electric Vertical Take Off and Landing) craft.  It’s a demonstrable fact that fixed wing aircraft usually have great range and endurance than rotary wing aircraft.  What if we combine the best of multicopter utility and fixed wing range? Electric multicopters are usually short-range vehicles that have a possible future in urban skies (although Joby has demonstrated over 150 mile flights).  The requirement that they lift off from buildings or constrained areas contributes to their short range.  Hauling all those batteries and passengers is a near-full power exercise every time, with reserve power enabling climbs to low-altitude city crossings. Proposed longer-range sky taxis from two makers are sprouting wings.  eHang and Volocopter …

End the Year on a Volocopter Note

Dean Sigler Announcements, Sky Taxis, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

Volocopter has an exciting way to end 2020, leaving the old year with a ticket for your future flight in a VoloCity VC 2-1 aircraft (the “Aircraft”).  Fine print, spelled out in the eight-page General Terms & Conditions for the Volocopter World Premiere Ticket Program, might cause the hesitant to pause. The more adventurous among us will start planning an overseas trip two or three years from now. Here’s the Deal “Berlin, 16 September 2020 — At Greentech Festival in Berlin today, Volocopter, the pioneer of Urban Air Mobility (UAM), announced that the world’s first public sale for electrical air taxi flight reservations has started. Effective immediately, Volocopter fans world-wide can reserve their tickets online and be amongst the very …

UAM Realization May be Closer than We Think

Dean Sigler Batteries, Electric Powerplants, Hybrid Aircraft, Sky Taxis, Sustainable Aviation Leave a Comment

We are on the verge of big happenings in the Urban Air Mobility (UAM) world.  Large amounts of money are flowing into the coffers of those companies which dared to pioneer in the area.  Large firms are partnering with these aerial startups.  And the Federal Aeronautics Administration is paying attention while actively pursuing certification for the new machines headed our way. Jay Merkle, FAA Certification and Airspace Integration At the Transportation Review Board’s annual meeting in Orlando, Florida, Jay Merkle, head of the FAA’s UAS integration office, told attendees that six (Urban Air Mobility) UAM  vehicles are “well along,” according to a report in Aviation Today.   He held that the growing market is ““more than just hype … this is …