Flying car Video Reveals Vehicle Actually Works Flying car, World’s first flying car ‘Model A’ gets flight certified, and it’s 100% electric

newskastore.com
20 Min Read
Flying car Video Reveals Vehicle Actually Works Flying car, World’s first flying car ‘Model A’ gets flight certified, and it’s 100% electric

Flying cars, also known as personal air vehicles (PAVs) or flying vehicles (eVTOLs), have been a long-standing concept in science fiction and futurism. They are vehicles that are capable of both road and air travel, combining the features of a car and an aircraft.

Another flying car has been certified to begin flight testing. California-based ASKA has received special airworthiness certification from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to conduct test flights of its four-seater passenger vehicle.

Where did it come from?

The company started product development in 2018 with subscale models and has now certified its larger-than-life prototype to begin flight testing. The SUV-sized aircraft debuted at the Consumer Electronics Show in Vegas this January and has been driving on the streets of Silicon Valley ever since, conducting testing and gathering data for this most recent certification.

The functional prototype has received FAA authorization and a Certificate of Authorization to start the type certification process toward commercialization. This Special Airworthiness Certificate signals that ASKA A5 has successfully met all FAA safety requirements, and the aircraft has now progressed to conducting authorized hover tests. Simple Flying spoke exclusively to the company’s founders about the recent certification and next steps for the company. Maki Kaplinsky, Chairman & COO of ASKA, shared her excitement to continue in the certification process:

How does it work?

In contrast to other eVTOLs, ASKA’s prototype has folding wings, which allow it to glide. The aircraft also features a ballistic parachute in case of emergency.

It is powered by six motors, all independent of each other to increase safety and redundancy, and is designed to reach speeds of 125 mph. Designed to have a flying range of 250 miles, the flying car also has a traditional fuel engine to provide the 30 minutes of reserve power required by the FAA. The range extender engine charges the batteries in-flight using premium gasoline from conventional gas stations.

While the idea of flying cars has captivated imaginations for decades, the reality of widespread adoption and implementation is still a work in progress. Several companies and startups are actively developing prototypes and working towards making flying cars a viable transportation option.

Advancements in electric propulsion, autonomous systems, and vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) technologies have contributed to the progress in the development of flying cars. These vehicles typically utilize electric or hybrid-electric propulsion systems, enabling them to be more environmentally friendly and quieter than traditional aircraft.

The company confirmed that it expects users of the vehicle will be required to have a private pilot’s license to operate the aircraft, which can seat three passengers in addition to the pilot. The car is designed to do the first and last mile on the road and most of the commuting in the air. It can take off moth vertically and traditionally on a runway using its wings and tilting rotors.

Are flying cars safe?

There is still a long process after the aircraft is completed before it can be fully certified by the FAA. Even in non-experimental categories, aircraft often have to wait over two years once completed to gain certification. Completed models like Boeing’s 777X have been flying for years while they undergo the testing and demonstration flights needed for FAA Certification.

Simple Flying spoke to Vance Hilderman, author, and expert on aviation safety and certification, about the future of eVTOL and Urban Air mobility vehicles. Even once the initial requirements have been met, there is an ongoing process to monitor safety processes at each step. Aircraft must be at least ten times safer per passenger kilometer than cars to carry paying passengers. Hilderman expressed his confidence that only aircraft meeting the most stringent standards would be allowed to carry paying passengers.

The size of the aircraft also affects how it can be certified. In the US, any subscale photo prototype weighed in more than 55 pounds needs special airworthiness certification. ASKA’s prototype weighs over 5,000 lbs, which is 30% larger than the final model is expected to be when launched in 2026.

Fellow flying car startup Alef, which also achieved an FAA certification, confirmed to Simple Flying that its Model A prototype will have an estimated weight of 850 lbs but that “Current weight is much below this.” The car will also initially be a Low-Speed Vehicle, with the intention to achieve full automotive certification in the future. Representatives for Alef Aeronautics declined requests to provide Simple Flying with photos of the prototype used for its certification last month.

Electric flying cars are arriving in the US

Electric flying cars are all of a sudden taking the US by storm. Last month, California-based Alef Aeronautics revealed its 100% electric flying car, “Model A,” the first of its kind to receive legal approval to fly from the US government.

According to Alef, the Model A has a 200-mile driving range and can fly for 110 miles. The company says it had gathered over 440 orders for its $300K electric flying car within three months.

Tim Draper, an early Tesla investor and well-known venture capitalist, invested $3 million in seed money to help jump-start the program, becoming the pioneering investor. Model A production is slated to begin in late 2025, with deliveries following shortly after.

Meanwhile, on the other US coast, Doroni Aerospace is pioneering its own path. This past week, the company’s CEO became one of the first to successfully test pilot a 2-seater eVTOL in the US.

What’s next for electric flying cars in the US?

When asked about the likelihood of owning a flying car in our lifetime, Merdinger said the company is already doing it.

Although many Sci-fi movies would have you believing flying cars need jet engines, Doroni is doing it with all-electric propellers and semi-autonomous tech.

“Everyone’s got to follow the same rules as Airbus and Boeing, although they’re lower on that rigor scale, with less complexity, they still have to follow all the same rules. There’s no certificate awarded to allow paying passengers until they’ve shown that they’ve met those tens of thousands of rules, so we can be pretty safe.”

However, there are still many technical, regulatory, and infrastructure challenges to overcome before flying cars become a common mode of transportation. Issues such as safety, air traffic management, certification, infrastructure requirements, and public acceptance need to be addressed.

Several companies, including Uber, Airbus, Volocopter, and many others, have been actively involved in the development of flying car prototypes and conducting test flights. Some prototypes have already been demonstrated, and there have been discussions about potential use cases such as urban air mobility, transportation in congested cities, and emergency medical services.

While the concept of flying cars is exciting, it is important to note that the widespread adoption and integration of such vehicles into our daily lives may still be several years or even decades away. The development and deployment of flying cars require significant advancements in technology, infrastructure, and regulatory frameworks to ensure their safety, efficiency, and practicality.

The eVTOL has ten electric motors altogether. Each of the four ducts contains two e-motors with patented ducted propellers for a total of eight designed for vertical flight and an additional “two pushers for efficient flight.”

The system is simple to use, with semi-autonomous capabilities to guide you to different levels. There is one control stick you push forward, backward, or to the side.

According to Doroni’s website, the 23-foot long, 15-foot wide, and 5.5-foot tall eVTOL weighs 1,650 lbs. It also has a top speed of 140 mph (100 mph cruising speed), a 60-mile range, and fast charging from 20% to 80% in under 20 mins.

Merdinger says the company already has over 300 requests for preorders and is aiming to begin deliveries by 2025.

One of its customers, for example, is a doctor who wants to use the eVTOL to take to work and skip traffic.

To fly the electric aircraft, you will need a certification. Currently, you need at least 20 hours of experience, 15 in the vehicle, and another five solo.

The biggest eVTOL segment, according to Merdinger, is the “Air Taxi” or ride-sharing businesses. Many air taxi companies are already aiming to get to market next year.

Although Air Taxi’s are designed for big cities like New York or Chicago, Doroni is not aiming for this market. At least not immediately. Instead, the company says there is enough space to fly everywhere, particularly in suburban areas.

Doroni isn’t looking to fly at 30,000 feet like an aircraft, but instead at just a few hundred feet. The idea behind its electric flying car is not just to get from point A to point B but rather to “enjoy nature,” according to Merdinger.

Electrek’s Take

To be fair, Doroni’s eVTOL taking off vertically doesn’t exactly convince me that flying cars will be on the streets anytime soon.

The company has a unique vision involving personal use, unlike many companies looking to use eVTOLs for ride-sharing in cities. At the same time, Doroni is showing more than most “flying car” companies in terms of what its tech is able to accomplish.

Like Merdinger said, “this is just the beginning,” as the company continues to work to bring its electric flying car to market. We’ll keep you updated on the flying electric car market. Stay tuned for more.

Last week, the Federal Aviation Administration cleared what is on track to be the world’s first government-cleared flying car on the market. 

It sounds like something from a science fiction novel or “The Jetsons,” but it’s real. Over the last few years, a group of startups has emerged, all trying to break into the newest frontier of mobility: making electric Vertical Takeoff and Landing (eVTOL) aircraft accessible to the public.

Alef’s Model A has only been cleared for a test run and still needs to prove satisfactory for guidelines from The National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration before it flies. The FAA’s approval made it possible for the startup to start focusing on bringing the novel vehicle technology it’s been developing since 2015 to the public. 

FAA clears first flying car:Meet the Florida-based company that could have the second

  • Alef unveiled its “Model A” flying car in October 2022 and has since received strong pre-orders from individuals and companies
  • Alef’s flying car is both road drivable on public roads and has vertical takeoff and landing capabilities
  • Alef is taking deposits for pre-orders for its “Model A” car for $300,000 on it’s website

SANTA MATEO, Calif., June 27, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Alef Aeronautics, a sustainable mobility company that is designing and developing a flying car, announced today that it received a Special Airworthiness Certification from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, marking the first time a vehicle of this nature has received legal approval to fly from the US Government.

The FAA is actively working on its policies for electrical vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) vehicles, as well as governing interactions between eVTOLs and ground infrastructure. Alef’s Special Airworthiness Certificate therefore limits the locations and purpose for which Alef is permitted to fly.

Alef emerged from stealth in October 2022 with the unveil of its full-sized sports car model along with two working full-size technology demonstrator cars. It has since received strong pre-orders from both individuals and companies. Alef’s flying car is 100% electric, drivable on public roads and has vertical takeoff and landing capabilities. The car will carry one or two occupants.

“We’re excited to receive this certification from the FAA. It allows us to move closer to bringing people an environmentally friendly and faster commute, saving individuals and companies hours each week. This is a one small step for planes, one giant step for cars,” said Jim Dukhovny, CEO of Alef.

About Alef: Alef, based in San Mateo, CA, is a sustainable electric transportation company designing and developing a road-legal passenger car capable of achieving vertical takeoff and forward flight. Alef was founded in 2015 by Jim Dukhovny, Konstantin Kisly, Pavel Markin, Oleg Petrov in Palo Alto, California. Alef’s investors include Draper Associates, Impact VC, Draper B1, Bronco Ventures, Strong VC, Louis Scola, Jim Boettcher, Jim Hurd, Jason Gorrie, Chinney, Knollwood Advisory and others. Alef recently announced the opening of a new fundraising round. More information can be found at https://alef.aero.

Flying car Video Reveals Vehicle Actually Works Flying car, World’s first flying car ‘Model A’ gets flight certified, and it’s 100% electric
  1. Vertical Takeoff and Landing (VTOL): One of the key features of flying cars is their ability to take off and land vertically, eliminating the need for traditional runways or airports. This vertical capability allows for greater flexibility in choosing landing and takeoff locations, such as helipads or designated landing zones.
  2. Urban Air Mobility (UAM): Flying cars are often envisioned as a solution to alleviate traffic congestion in urban areas. By taking to the skies, they could potentially provide faster transportation between city centers and suburbs or enable commuters to bypass congested roadways.
  3. Autonomy and Flight Control Systems: Many flying car concepts incorporate autonomous or semi-autonomous capabilities, relying on advanced flight control systems and navigation technologies. These systems would handle tasks like obstacle avoidance, route planning, and air traffic management to ensure safe and efficient operations.
  4. Infrastructure Requirements: For flying cars to become a reality, significant infrastructure development would be necessary. This includes establishing dedicated landing and takeoff zones, charging or refueling stations, maintenance facilities, and air traffic management systems capable of handling increased aerial traffic.
  5. Regulation and Certification: The integration of flying cars into existing airspace regulations presents a considerable challenge. Developing appropriate regulations and certification processes that ensure the safety and reliability of these vehicles is crucial. Collaboration between aviation authorities, governments, and industry stakeholders is necessary to establish a regulatory framework that accommodates the unique characteristics and challenges of flying cars.
  6. Energy Efficiency and Sustainability: Electric or hybrid-electric propulsion systems are commonly considered for flying cars to minimize environmental impact. By utilizing electric power, flying cars can potentially reduce greenhouse gas emissions and noise pollution compared to conventional aircraft with internal combustion engines.
  7. Public Acceptance and Adoption: The widespread adoption of flying cars also depends on public acceptance and perception. Factors such as safety, noise levels, affordability, and convenience will influence how readily people embrace this mode of transportation.

It’s worth noting that while the development and implementation of flying cars present significant challenges, the advancements in technology and the growing interest from various stakeholders suggest that we may see the emergence of this futuristic transportation mode in the coming years.

Alef Aeronautics’ flying car has been given a special airworthiness certification from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), meaning the company will be allowed to road/air test the car, the company said in a news release. 

The fully electric vehicle (with a hydrogen option for a higher price) is a low-speed vehicle that can be driven up to 200 miles on public roads and fits into a regular garage, but it can also launch vertically into the air with a flying range of 110 miles, according to Alef’s website.

The company’s “Model A” car “can fly forward above the obstacles until a desired destination is reached,” the San Mateo-based company says. “The driver and the cabin are stabilized by a unique gimbaled rotating cabin design.”

This week, Alef Aeronautics revealed its flying car “Model A” was granted legal permission from the Federal Aviation Administration to test run the vehicle on the road and in the sky − a move needed before it can be released to the public.

Alef is the first company to receive a Special Airworthiness Certification from the FAA, the company said in a news release. The certification limits the locations and purpose for which the vehicle is allowed to fly.

The vehicle will also need to meet National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration safety standards before taking flight.

Share This Article
Leave a comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *