Technology for a proposed short take-off and landing (STOL) air taxi has passed computational fluid dynamics tests conducted over the past 12 months at City University’s centre for aeronautics in London, UK.
The vertical thrust augmentation, horizontal stabiliser and wing designs for the aircraft, known as Jetpod by its UK developer Avcen, were studied in the computer simulations. The study of the new STOL vehicle also required the development of new computation mechanics software.
“The results obtained up to now indicate that the wing cross-section appears to be ideal for low- and high-speed flight, and that Jetpod’s augmentation vertical thrust, as generated by deflecting a portion of the horizontal outlet jet downwards, does indeed lead to a reduction of the required take-off distance to under 125m [410ft],” says Dr Joe Iannelli, director of City University’s centre for aeronautics.
As well as design assessment studies the company is discussing engine options with small gas turbine engine manufacturer Williams International.
Avcen will now bring the Jetpod off the drawing board, through a proof of concept flight-testing phase, into a structured aircraft certification program and eventually into the marketplace. Applications will in due course be made to the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) in Cologne. Certification of the civil passenger version can take some 4-5 years from first application. The military and UAV variants could be ready in 3-4 years. Our strategy is to continue with what funding we have but our doors are open to new investment.
It should be noted that the aircraft is not at all a car but a 350 mph cruise capable aircraft that can take-off and land in 125 metres.
Company website here.