Erik Lindbergh Launches VTOL Project

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Erik Lindbergh has formed a new aerospace company, VerdeGo Aero, he announced on Wednesday in a news release. Lindbergh, who is well-known in GA as an advocate for new technology and as the grandson of Charles Lindbergh, will serve as president of the company, which will be based at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University’s MicaPlex incubator in Daytona, Florida. “At VerdeGo Aero, we are building the first safe and efficient short-range vertical takeoff and landing aircraft for the millions of people stuck in traffic in cities around the world,” Lindbergh said. “Use your smartphone to book your Personal Air Taxi and your trip to a verti-port across town will take minutes instead of hours.”

The company aims to develop a VTOL, the PAT200, powered by hybrid-electric technology, with “full flight-envelope safety systems for the safest, quietest, and most efficient aircraft possible,” according to the news release. The tilt-wing aircraft will carry two passengers, with a cruise speed greater than 130 knots, for flights up to 40 miles. Eight electric motors will drive independent rotors. The company will be competing with a number of other groups looking toward developing similar technologies, from Volocopter to Airbus. Volocopter co-founder Alex Zosel said at a tech conference this week he expects his aircraft to be part of a commercial air-taxi service within two to three years.

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Comments (4)

I'm thinking that prop shrouds/guards would be a worthwhile addition to this Mother of all Meat-cutters.

Posted by: Tom Yarsley | December 8, 2017 11:47 AM    Report this comment

Tilt wing is not the best choice for very short (than 40 mile) flights. You might save a few minutes flying time but you introduce a lot of extra weight, complexity, and (as we see in the picture) danger from blades rotating down at kneecap level.

The idea that this can be used by millions of people (who are currently stuck in traffic) is terrifying. Millions of low flying aircraft all flying at whatever direction means collisions (and serious concerns about security). You think drones are a problem for security and safety, just imaging millions of these in the mix too!

Posted by: Mark Fraser | December 8, 2017 5:09 PM    Report this comment

Why is this conceptual design more practical then an electric powered helicopter?

An electric power system adoption for an existing helicopter is a much easier modification then a totally new design that has no commercially proven prototypes. Most multi-rotor drones have very little useful load because of all the extra motors and control mechanisms.

This is probably just another money grab. A bunch of rich celebrities with too much money will buy into it because it will make them look smart and they care about global climate change. In the end a couple dozen people will get a big salary for making short videos about a possible future. It would be cheaper just to do 'The Jetsons' reruns :)

Posted by: Klaus Marx | December 9, 2017 12:26 PM    Report this comment

This design is, as an acquaintance of mine said recently, "Vaporware".
Another issue which the flying taxi boys don't talk about is weather and icing...unless these things are being designed for the few places that have year round sun...uh, except wouldn't that make their cabins awfully hot and sweaty and unglamorous?

Posted by: Richard Katz | December 10, 2017 8:03 AM    Report this comment

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