German company released five composite material change flight “air taxi”
Recently, Lilium Corporation of Munich, Germany, officially released a new all-electric five-seat “air taxi” prototype – Lilium Jet, which completed its first flight over Germany earlier this month.
Lilium Jet’s fuselage structure is almost entirely made of carbon fiber composite material, which is the key to achieving ultra-light design. It is said that the full-size, full-weight prototype is powered by 36 electric jet engines, making it easy to complete vertical takeoffs and landings while achieving effective horizontal and cruising flight. The aircraft is designed to be simple, has no tails, no rudders, no propellers, no gearboxes, and has only one moving part in the engine. The design is said to help improve the safety and load capacity of the aircraft, while also enabling the R&D team to add aesthetic elements such as panoramic windows and gull-wing doors to the aircraft.
According to reports, the aircraft has a maximum speed of 300 km/h and a maximum range of 300 km. Its long-lasting flight can be attributed in part to the efficient fixed-wing design. It only consumes less than 10% of the aircraft’s maximum output (2000 hp), which provides enough lift for the cruise process. The aircraft is a good choice for high-speed commuting, connecting the city centre with the suburbs, the airport and the large railway station, as well as the various areas.
Daniel Wiegand, co-founder and CEO of the company, said: “We have taken another big step forward in realizing urban air traffic development. In less than two years, we have completed the design and construction of the aircraft. And successfully made the first flight, we will use it as a template for mass production.”
After the ground test of the Lilium Jet aircraft in Munich, Germany, the first flight was completed on May 4 this year. The prototype was verified by ground personnel remotely, and the flight test success also laid the foundation for the future safety certification of this model with large commercial aircraft.
Wiegand also said: “Lilium Jet’s passenger capacity has increased from two to five, enabling more passengers to participate in the city’s air traffic system. Bringing friends and family, or business travel, the number of seats increases It makes the city’s flight experience more economical. The Lilium Jet is beautiful in appearance, speed and voyage can strike a perfect balance among many modes of transportation, and it is likely to have a positive impact on people’s future life and travel style.”
Lilium plans to mass-produce the LIlium Jet aircraft as part of the company’s “on-demand air taxi” service. Lilium said that at the beginning of the project, the use of carbon fiber composite materials has been put on the agenda, and the company is currently planning to industrialize the production process. Passengers will use the Lilium APP to locate the nearest apron to facilitate their planned itinerary, while passengers can also obtain information on the apron network distribution of “air taxis” between the city and surrounding areas from the app. The company said that the price of the Lilium Jet is comparable to that of a taxi, but the speed will be five times that of a taxi.
Lilium expects to be fully operational in many cities around the world by 2025, before which services will be piloted in several locations.
The latest five-seater is based on the successful flight test of two aircraft in 2017. In 2017, the test flight of the two prototypes demonstrated the changing flight capability of Lilium’s iconic vertical flight to horizontal flight, laying the foundation for the design and manufacture of the five aircraft.