Paul Moller’s 50-year dream to build a flying car won’t die!

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D Hillberg

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I don't think there'll be much dead-simple stability stuff. You'd need 3-axis gyros, at minimum, with all the amplifiers and interfacing stuff.

Helicopter flying is challenging because of the inherent instability of the machine, and that's with fully-articulated rotors whose blades can adjust pitch instantly, unlike electric motors that have to spool up and down constantly. And the helicopter is normally heavier, while the multicopter is lighter and so response times have to be real quick. Moller's engines would have had much more rotating mass, and the lateral spacing of the pods was small, so controllability would never have been much more than marginal without computers that sense the tiniest departure from a commanded attitude.

The multicopter doesn't even have the pendulum effect of a helicopter.

Fixed-wing flight took a long time to develop. The Wrights weren't the first to try it. There were many failures before them. And fixed-wing flight was dead-simple, relatively speaking, while the multicopter thing is way more complicated.
You trim helicopters just like a fixed wing and fly hands off - UH 1 OH 58 . Where you learn to fly?
The Bell 212 we had could go hands off and shoot approaches = fun stuff
the S 58 had a simple force gradient - no gyros = fat dumb and happy
The Los Angeles Airways S - 55 in the 50s mail running used rubber bands to cruise hands off for the long hauls
The Bell 47 you could friction the controls and lean where you wanted to go. Lunch on the fly
No gyros until the 212.... Even the R-22 flies well and has been landing in neighborhoods for years.
Multi copters are a big step backwards - Like electric cars from the 1800s
 

dog

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You trim helicopters just like a fixed wing and fly hands off - UH 1 OH 58 . Where you learn to fly?
The Bell 212 we had could go hands off and shoot approaches = fun stuff
the S 58 had a simple force gradient - no gyros = fat dumb and happy
The Los Angeles Airways S - 55 in the 50s mail running used rubber bands to cruise hands off for the long hauls
The Bell 47 you could friction the controls and lean where you wanted to go. Lunch on the fly
No gyros until the 212.... Even the R-22 flies well and has been landing in neighborhoods for years.
Multi copters are a big step backwards - Like electric cars from the 1800s
Did not know that about helicopters,changes my
whole view of them.
Still the idea of the personal flying pod,PFP™, is long standing and will not be met by anything flying now,as it has to be easy to fly,and be capable of landing in most urban environments
without producing an instant canibal buffet,so shrouded props,anything with open props/rotors
and its better to stick with what we have now,in
controlled landing spaces,with trained pilots and
ground crew
 

D Hillberg

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Did not know that about helicopters,changes my
whole view of them.
Still the idea of the personal flying pod,PFP™, is long standing and will not be met by anything flying now,as it has to be easy to fly,and be capable of landing in most urban environments
without producing an instant canibal buffet,so shrouded props,anything with open props/rotors
and its better to stick with what we have now,in
controlled landing spaces,with trained pilots and
ground crew
Don't need a ground crew. Unless lifting, reloading or FARs.
Frank Robinson used to take his 'work' home with him... and going out for diner or lunch was/is a blast.
 

Brünner

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I would be more interested in his rotary engines than his flying paperweight, maybe they have aviation potential.
 

Victor Bravo

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The Los Angeles Airways S - 55 in the 50s mail running used rubber bands to cruise hands off for the long hauls
By any chance, did you fly those Los Angeles Airways runs in the S-61 between Century City and LAX in the mid 1960's?

If so, I might have flown with you.... I would have been that little 5 year old spoiled brat kid with blonde hair, just mesmerized by flying around over the city.
 

Aesquire

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Rochester, NY, USA
Moller seems to have a craft I want to fly. But He was looking for a robotic replacement for a future not yet here.

Author/Engineer Dean Ing wrote a novel



The title plane used ducted fans (2) with thrust diverted for VTOL. Rather similar to M oller's in principle. ( not going to say stolen, but... ) A bunch of nifty stealth stuff too, some straight out of Area 51, or Aviation Week & Space Tech.

It would be an ambitious homebuilt, bu uuut needs some detail work on hovering maneuvering controls.

That's as close as I expect to get to the Moller Aircar.
 

D Hillberg

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By any chance, did you fly those Los Angeles Airways runs in the S-61 between Century City and LAX in the mid 1960's?

If so, I might have flown with you.... I would have been that little 5 year old spoiled brat kid with blonde hair, just mesmerized by flying around over the city.
Nope, My dad was a mail hauler/mechanic, My Mom Aunt Uncle and A/P Professor were there when they closed their doors, In the 55s they'd have one pilot and hauler for the stops where no one was around.
McDonnal Douglas paid better so Dad went there for mo $ $ $ $ $ - Did get to meet Igor as a little brat
 

dog

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the 1.5 trillion dollar "urban airspace" market
lets unpack that
off to work
groceries
going out for lunch
going to the show
greeting important visitors
this is the ultimate market for high status convienience,bieng seen getting above it all
zero room for decapitations and amputations
fully shrouded props or nuthin
there is no way to integrate any open prop/rotor
craft into a higher (human) density environment
not saying its actualy going to work or happen,but
there is a very real widespread desire for personal
flying pods,and that means hype and money,which is mollering in right now
 

BJC

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He still believes that he has a winning solution :popcorn:
He has had a winning solution to the problem of getting others to bountifully support his personal fantasy.

If he were a competent engineer, he would have abandoned his ridiculous scheme decades ago. He is not.


BJC
 

Vigilant1

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Big difference between helicopters and quad copters. Disk loading and rotor pitch. Helicopters are pretty well figured out. Quad copters waste power like crazy. An electric helicopter makes way more sense than a quad copter.
In concept, electric motors make it practical to divide up a given amount of power over many smaller motors, each with its own rotor. It is possible to get low, efficient disk loadings in this way.
Obviously, this doesn't solve the problems of battery energy density, need for fault tolerance, etc.
 

Jay Kempf

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Not the point. The point is a helicopter turns a single wing slowly at low pitch. That wing is larger than the actual vehicle so it is very structurally efficient. A single motor can turn it very effectively and can be kept at it's best efficiency point through maneuvering, cruise, takeoff and landing.

Quadcopters make huge excess thrust for stability and control. Ever heard one trying to hover in a big gusty wind. You can hear all kinds of frequencies meaning the throttles are all over the place. Throttles can have a 300% ratio. And they are fixed pitch so no ability to save fuel for either hover or cruise or anything in between. So they chew power like crazy to be what they are and appear to be what they are. Not saying they don't have uses. Just saying scaling them up to human sized is not as simple as a lot of people think. It can be done but the battery weight fraction vs. endurance thing is really a hard problem. If you aren't carrying humans it is a different animal altogether.

I think a lot of marketing in the space (not all but certainly most) is fantasy at best.
 

BJC

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His SkyCar is a sound design
Then why isn’t it flying?
Moeller and his design, his company, deserve support.
Why do they deserve support? By what criteria do you arrive at that conclusion?
Many of P Moeller attackers remain in the field of criminal offenders.
What attackers? Physical attacks, or people who criticize his much hyped, but non-functional, “aircraft”?

What information do you have to support your allegation that they are criminals?


BJC
 

Dana

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Don't worry, Moller will have Skycars available for purchase Real Soon Now...
 

dog

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the missing piece to any muti rotor human craft is
some kind of reserve power/auto rotate
git u down now gizmo
from following other discussions on what kind of design and development process is required for
100% electricaly dependent flight systems to be
certified,I know that there is a very high standard
to be met,and that in the case of personal flying
pods,that requirement is for primary propulsion
hmmmmmm,first thing that comes to mind is that
there will have to a universal standard for motors,
controllers and batteries,everybody drop there patents and maybe just maybe get something flight rated,and then compete on design implementation and markets,and all the fluff and glitter
 

PMD

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I have seen Moller pop up for DECADES, and no question he has done some fairly interesting work.....but work to accomplish what???? The real issue is that we have designed/developed cities that are not productive, not sustainable and now actually "workable". Instead of spending a half century trying to figure out an unbelievably wasteful way of flying individuals out of it, the time, efffort and money should have been spent on making the infrastructure WORK for those unfortunate enough to live in such crap holes.
 
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