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IPFS News Link • Transportation: Air Travel

CycloTech shows first flight of its cyclo-rotor eVTOL prototype

•, By Loz Blain

The Cyclogiro system uses Voith-Schneider propellers instead of rotors, effectively packaging its propulsion systems as fast-spinning barrels. Each barrel has a number of variable-pitch blades around it, and the pitch of those blades varies constantly as the barrel spins. That allows the flight control software on these things to vector thrust very quickly in 360 degrees at each barrel, without having to speed up or slow down the rotation.

Like regular rotors with variable-pitch blades, this means an aircraft that flies on these things can operate on a range of different fuel systems, including fossil fuels that can't deliver instant torque like electric motors can. Unlike variable-pitch rotors, this system can also point thrust straight downwards, forwards, backwards or anywhere in between; this is the system you want if you need to fly in a vertical orientation or upside down.

Russia's Foundation for Advanced Research has already flown a 60 kg (132 lb) prototype of a Cyclogiro VTOL aircraft, which it intends to develop into a long-range, hybrid 6-seater. Now CycloTech has followed up with the first flight video of its 83 kg (183 lb) technology demonstrator platform.