eHang definitely will not be alone within the skies when China’s eVTOL air taxi market opens up. Two new tasks have simply been introduced: the Autoflight V1500M, and the Pantuo Pantala – which frankly ought to be anticipating a letter from Lilium’s legal professionals.
Shanghai firm Autoflight has been making heavy-lift logistics drones since 2017, and introduced it was engaged on an air taxi final yr. Right here it’s; unveiled on the China Airshow in Zhuhai, the V1500M is a spindly-looking lift-and-cruise design designed to hold three-to-four passengers.
The cabin sits beneath a 12.8-m (42-ft)-wide predominant wing. A 3rd of the best way alongside every wing, there is a beam that extends longitudinally. Behind these beams are a pair of pusher props for horizontal flight. The entrance ends of the beams seem like joined by one other raise floor, which is able to assist in environment friendly ahead flight.
For VTOL operations, there are eight raise props alongside the tops of the beams, with the third pair prolonged upwards on their very own nacelles, presumably to maintain the plane slightly extra compact. Autoflight says it will cruise at a reasonably relaxed 200 km/h (124 mph), and guarantees a stable vary of 250 km (155 miles) with all seats crammed.
The corporate offered a prototype in Zhuhai, and says it expects to start out flight testing “within the close to future.” Certification is focused for 2024, and it is unclear whether or not Autoflight will construct these solely for the Chinese language home market or purpose to certify with the FAA and EASA as properly.
And secondly, there’s the beautiful Pantuo Pantala Idea H, which appears to be like for all of the world prefer it may’ve been designed by Aston Martin. Or Lilium – the visible resemblance is inconceivable to overlook.
Just like the Lilium Jet, the Pantala’s glossy cabin is supported by a big, extensive wing on the rear and a shorter canard on the entrance. Just like the Lilium jet, it runs numerous small ducted followers, organized in banks alongside the wings – though these followers look a lot bigger than Lilium’s, and the place Lilium vectors thrust by tilting the propulsion banks and leaving the wings in place, the Pantala tilts the whole wings for VTOL operations.
We’ve no specs on efficiency, no info on what number of seats it runs, and no thought what stage Pantuo Aviation is at as an organization or what the plans are right here. Certainly, all we have to go by is the render video under. For all we all know, this might simply as simply be a college design undertaking as a brand new eVTOL startup.
Nonetheless, it positive is a fairly factor, with that Manta-sleek cabin and saucy LED lighting alongside the wings. However any cool factors there need to go to the unique design, and we’ll have an interest to see if Lilium decides to throw down on this one if it involves fruition. Try the video under.
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