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Rotapower - The engine of the future

Moller M400 Skycar 'the Flying Car' powered by Rotapower

Moller M400 Skycar


This Rotapower website would not be complete
without referring to its mother the Moller Skycar

It was in the development of the Skycar that it became clear that tiny, super-lightweight and super-lean engines with few critical moving parts were crucial if the Skycar were ever to realise its destiny. The Rotapower family of engines became an extraordinary spin-off business from this development.

The M400 Skycar:  The Perfect Executive Aircraft

The M400 Skycar is the answer to high-speed personal airborne transportation.  This aircraft combines the speed, altitude, and comfort of a turboprop with the vertical takeoff and landing capabilities of a helicopter at a very affordable cost. Having cruising capabilities of 25,000 ft., this versatile aircraft is being designed for operations in icing conditions and extreme climates, from Arctic to desert. With seating for four and at twice the speed and range of helicopters of comparable capacity, the M400 is designed to be the best ever multi-mode aircraft for executive transport.

An executive could conceivably take off from the vertiport near his country house outside London, fly in comfort to a meeting in Frankfurt in just 60 minutes, then fly on to Zurich, Milan and back home for early dinner. With foldable wings the aircraft becomes compliant with maximum width limitations for many roadways and could also meet a user’s minimum ground transportation requirements (i.e., potentially able to use the Skycar on streets and roadways at speeds up to 35 mph).

Conversely, covering vast distances in a hurry without typical delays required to accommodate fixed-wing aircraft, is reason enough to consider the M400 Skycar for any fleet. From city center to city center, there's no quicker way to travel from one downtown area to another for distances between 50 and 500 miles with fuel consumption comparable to that of a large SUV (i.e., ~20 mpg). Add up the M400's unique capabilities and performance characteristics, add in excellent value and low lifecycle costs, and the result is superior personalized transportation. The M400 will simply be one of the most useful and versatile aircraft in aviation history. Whether in a crowded urban air traffic corridor or in undeveloped region, this revolutionary powered-lift vehicle will shine as exquisite transport anywhere in the world.

Until the advent of the Skycar, personal high-speed travel has been performed using a combination of private and chartered helicopters and fixed-wing aircraft in addition to scheduled airline flights. The M400 Skycar offers the vertical takeoff and landing capability of a helicopter, with the cruising speed, altitude, and range of a fixed wing aircraft. It represents a totally new approach to executive transportation.   The unique characteristics of the M400 Skycar can literally revolutionize this process by giving tightly scheduled executives a single efficient solution to the problem of getting from here to there in the shortest possible time. The M400 combines the benefits of several transportation choices into one aircraft.

 

Street legal Moller Skycar wings folded

A few of the Moller Skycar models

Moller Skycar in Hover mode

The M400 will be pressurized and certified for instrument flight into known icing conditions and will feature composite materials construction, an advanced glass cockpit, and digital flight controls. These advanced technologies will provide new levels of performance, reliability and affordability to the aviation world while the intuitive controls will provide unmatched ease of piloting.  The open architecture of the Skycar’s computer-assisted flight controls will permit future improvements in automated air traffic control to be quickly coupled with the aircraft to facilitate integration of these emerging “Highway in the Sky” routing and planning functions.  This era of fast, safe and easy-to-operate personal transportation could stimulate the growth of thousands of community and urban vertiports, portals through which future Skycar users can access both business and residential locations.

Designed from the outset for low life cycle maintenance and maximum operational flexibility, this powered-lift aircraft will offer operators highly cost-effective, point-to-point transportation at cruise speeds up to 275 knots and at ranges up to 750 nautical miles (depending on operational parameters and atmospheric conditions). With an initial cost of $995,000 and delivery dates estimated for mid-2009, the Skycar will prove to be an exceptional value with extraordinary, never before available, capabilities.

On October 26, 2002 in Davis, California, Moller International made aviation history with the inaugural test flight of the world's first powered-lift aircraft intended for civilian use.  In a private showing before the Company’s shareholders the vehicle was demonstrated in a brief, unmanned, tethered hover flight.  “We have blended the best of today’s technology to create the Skycar: the strength and weight savings of composite materials, the speed, reliability and affordability of state-of-the-art electronics and our remarkable power plant, the Rotapower® engine, to produce this first-of-its-kind aircraft” said Dr. Paul Moller, the inventor and President of Moller International.

After nearly seven years of continuous development and refinement the Skycar is approaching its next major milestone:  a manned, untethered flight demonstration.  This event, scheduled for 2010 or early 2011, is funding dependent and will be carried out at a time and location to be announced.  For more information about an invitation to this event please contact us.

A Vertiport is a takeoff and/or landing area designated for Vertical Takeoff and Landing (VTOL) aircraft

Moller M400 Skycar


 



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