Pegasus flying car/helicopter at CES 2020

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Victor Bravo

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It has four wheels instead of three, which makes it no longer able to fall under DOT "motorcycle" rules on the road... which IIRC means it would have to meet the much more difficult DOT "car" rules. I was told that a three wheeler can sidestep a lot of the more burdensome safety regulations of a "car".
 

bmcj

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It has four wheels instead of three, which makes it no longer able to fall under DOT "motorcycle" rules on the road... which IIRC means it would have to meet the much more difficult DOT "car" rules. I was told that a three wheeler can sidestep a lot of the more burdensome safety regulations of a "car".
That’s my understanding as well.
 

litespeed

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Is their a need for this? Maybe.

Does it work....yes

Is it practical?........more than most flying auto.

Is the tech mature?................Yes

Are they spending big on marketing.....No

Are they spending on developement?.....Yes.

Does it have technical hurdles............No.

I think it could be A WINNER for a limited market.

Does what it is advertised.

Never bet against a plucky Aussie with a plan.
 

cluttonfred

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I wish them well, but the requirements for flight vs. road safety are so diametrically opposite that it's hard to see any vehicle able to do both well. Last time I checked, the lightest new car sold in the USA was the Mitsubishi Mirage hatchback at a little over 2,000 lb and most people would argue that such a small, light vehicle is not the safest option in the land of SUVs and pickup trucks. Still, I can't imagine even a two-seater flying car able to match the road safety of the Mirage and still be a decent flying machine without gobs of power and a ridiculous price. Hopefully for them, I'm wrong.
 

BJC

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I’m with you, Matthew.

Other than as a prop in a TV show, or a wealthy person’s conversation piece, I am at a loss to understand the purpose of a flying car.


BJC
 

litespeed

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I don't think comparisons to normal cars is relevant.

It is primarily a flying helicopter that also allows the power to drive the wheels. It is not designed anything like a car nor heavy like one. It would be fat motorcycle weight.

Think more of a small sporthelicopter that allows you to get to a suitable takeoff area. No hangar, no dedicated airfield, no trailer and truck etc. Its not a commuter. A bit like a gyrocopter as you can land and takeoff on a roll as well.

The suspension and wheels would be light and landing gear is needed anyway- but this can take shock loads from hard landings.

The carbon cabin could be very strong and light- it would be a sub 300kg aircraft if done well. A safe structure for the pilot in such a low weight aircraft/vehicle is not as hard as a much heavier car. Just like a light aircraft suffers greatly reduced loads than a heavy one.
Small and light wheels, suspension, tyres and brakes give more than adequate performance. Stuff at this scale is very light for the application. The low C of G means it should also handle very well.

20 to 30 kg of cabin in carbon/kevlar/foam strong and roadworthy crash wise. Add in a kg of airbags and it would be great.

There is nothing actually groundbreaking about this design, nothing untried just different disciplines coming together to optimise a design.

Will it be efficient like a solo helicopter- no, but that is not the market.

It is a toy or design that happens to meet your needs.

It works and given their way of doing things ie. substance over marketing they might well succeed.

I think to compare to many flying car ideas does it a disservice.

Do the rules suit- depends on where you are, I expect its under a low volume rule- so no expensive crash tests etc.
 

BJC

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There is nothing actually groundbreaking about this design, nothing untried just different disciplines coming together to optimise a design.
As mentioned earlier, I am not aware of a proven helicopter that has a rotor that folds at mid-span. It there one?
It is a toy
Yes, a toy that will require a license to operate.


BJC
 

BJC

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saini flyer

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Thanks.

Their web site, with the latest news update 9 years ago, indicates that they have a patent for the rotor folding system.

Note that there is a difference in rotor dynamics between most helicopters and gyrocopters.


BJC
BJC, unfortunately Larry Neal is no more.
 

cluttonfred

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litespeed, I see your point, but if it’s billed as a car and looks like a car then people will expect that same safety (handling and crash) as a real car. Otherwise it’s just a lawsuit waiting to happen.

I can easily imagine autonomous VTOL replacing ground transport at some future date but as an air-only solution with no ground operation other than the equivalent of taxi and parking.
 

Victor Bravo

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A flying car, or roadable aircraft, etc. is one set of problems. It has been done and continues to be done, albeit in very small quantities. For an "airplane" style vehicle... Convair built one, Molt Taylor certified one, and a dozen or so others have been built with varying degrees of success.

The European PAL-V is a good take on a rotorcraft version. There have been a few roadable gyros that flew. My friend and fellow EAA Chapter 40 member Dezso Molnar has designed and built two rather exotic gyro style flying motorcycles in our chapter hangar, one of which has actually flown.

A "flying car" that also can operate as a VTOL... now you complicate everything exponentially. Adding drive wheels onto a helicopter seems straightforward, but I really think it is a lot more complicated and failure-prone than it looks.

To achieve realistic "every day" VTOL I have to go completely outside of my normal attitude about this stuff and admit that the Blackfly or a refined version of that overall configuration actually seems to be the right direction. VTOL by rocking a banana shaped fuselage, instead of having to reconfigure the whole airframe, is actually !(#*$ brilliant.

But you'll kindly note that the Blackfly is not roadable. In terms of a business commuter, for the "flying car" daydream, it's only useful for a Jetsons style landing pad sticking out the side of the Spacely Space Sprockets tower.
 
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