American startup offers the military electric ‘flying saucers’
WASHINGTON – American startup Zeva Aero has built a prototype of a single-seater aircraft that looks like a flying saucer, learned BulgarianMilitary.com, citing Zeva Aero. The test has already begun. The developers hope that their project, among other things, will be of interest to the military.
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According to the publication New Atlas, an air taxi Zero from the startup Zeva Aero is a tailsitter. That is, it can take off vertically, then go into horizontal flight and land on the tail. Tailsiters are unpretentious to the runways and have good flying characteristics.
Zero tailsitter looks like a disc with a diameter of 2.4 meters and a weight of 317 kilograms. The “flying saucer” is made of carbon fiber. There are two electric screws at the front and rear, placed coaxially. The first Zero prototype received batteries with a capacity of about 20-kilowatt hours, and the production model will have a slightly larger capacity – 25-kilowatt hours. In series production, the team estimates a price of about $ 250,000 per unit.
According to the concept of the developers, in the starting position, the “plate” is on the tail and you can climb into it through the hatch at the back. The aircraft then took off vertically and after 20 seconds switched to horizontal flight mode.
Zero will be able to fly up to 80 kilometers and develop a speed of up to 257 kilometers per hour. The American startup has already conducted summer tests of this model of air taxi, reduced eight times.
Zeva Aero CEO Stephen Tibbits said the full-scale Zero prototype was ready and flying with insurance cables. In three to four weeks, the developers will start testing remote-controlled air taxis and will switch to manned flights within three to six months. They hope that the tailsitter will be used not only as air taxis but also by the military and emergency services.
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