By Chris Stonor
Much to the surprise of the doomsayers who consistently ridicule the concept of a vehicle that can both travel on the road and fly in the air, Aircar, a leader of the pack, has been issued with an official Certificate of Airworthiness by the Slovak Transport Authority, reports a press release.
This achievement has followed the successful completion of 70 hours of rigorous flight testing compatible with European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) standards, with over 200 take-offs and landings.
These trials included a full range of flight and performance maneuvers to demonstrate a static and dynamic stability in the aircraft mode. The take-off and landing procedures were carried out even without the pilot’s need to touch the flight controls.
The release says, “It took a team of 8 highly skilled specialists and over 100,000 manhours to convert design drawings into mathematical models with CFD analysis calculations, wind tunnel testing, 1:1 design prototype powered by electric 15KW engine to 1000kg 2-seat dual-mode prototype powered by 1.6L BMW engine that achieved the crucial certification milestone.”
Professor Stefan Klein, the inventor, leader of the development team and the test pilot, enthused, “AirCar certification opens the door for mass production of very efficient flying cars. It is official and the final confirmation of our ability to change mid-distance travel forever.”
Anton Zajac, the project co-Founder, added, “50 years ago, the car was the epitome of freedom. AirCar expands those frontiers, by taking us into the next dimension, where road meets sky.”
Professor Stefan Klein & Anton Zajac
The successful certification comes after four previous versions of the AirCar. Dr. Branko Sarh, Boeing Co. Senior Technical Fellow, commented, “The automated transition from road vehicle into an air vehicle and vice versa, deploying/retracting wings and tail is not only the result of pioneering enthusiasm, innovative spirit and courage; it is an outcome of excellent engineering and professional knowledge.”
The Slovakian Transportation Authority carefully monitored all stages of the AirCar development from its start in 2017. René Molnár, the director of the Civil Aviation Division, remarked, “Transportation safety is our highest priority and AirCar combines top innovations with safety measures in line with EASA standards. It defines a new category of a sports car and a reliable aircraft. Its certification was both a challenging and fascinating task.”
Klein Vision has already completed tests of a new more powerful, lightweight and efficient ADEPT Airmotive aviation engine and is finalising drawings and technical calculations for the upcoming monocoque model with variable pitch propeller expected to reach speeds of over 300km/h and with a range of 1,000km. This new production model is expected to be certified in 12 months.
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