Aircraft

Tetra Aviation debuts single-seat buy 'n' fly personal eVTOL

Tetra Aviation debuts single-s...
Tetra's Mk5 personal eVTOL is set to start deliveries in 2022
Tetra's Mk5 personal eVTOL is set to start deliveries in 2022
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Tetra's Mk5 personal eVTOL is set to start deliveries in 2022
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Tetra's Mk5 personal eVTOL is set to start deliveries in 2022
A 100-mph eVTOL with 100-mile range you can buy as a kit plane
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A 100-mph eVTOL with 100-mile range you can buy as a kit plane
The Mk5 prototype has flown, and was on display at OshKosh this year
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The Mk5 prototype has flown, and was on display at OshKosh this year
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Japan's Tetra Aviation won a hundred-grand "disruptor award" at the GoFly personal flight contest last year, and has now presented its first commercial product at OshKosh: a 33-rotor Mk5 personal eVTOL it hopes to begin delivering to buyers in 2022.

The Mk5 is a lightweight single-seat lift-and-cruise-style aircraft running 32 vertical lift rotors distributed across long, thin wings at the front and rear of a small cabin, with a single pusher prop on the rear for cruise flight. Its frame is mainly aluminum, and the bodywork is a lightweight carbon fiber reinforced polymer with some aramid fibers in there too.

The prototype shown at OshKosh this year, which has already flown, is a decent size at 8.62 m (28.2 feet) wide, 6.15 m (20.2 ft) long and 2.51 m (8.2 ft) high, so it'll take up a fair bit of room in the garage. With a 13.5-kWh battery pack, it weighs 488 kg (1,076 lb) empty and has a maximum takeoff weight of 567 kg (1,250 lb) – leaving room for a 79-kg (174-lb) pilot or less.

Many of these figures will move north for the production version, which is designed to take at least a 91-kg (200-lb) pilot, and fly at cruise speeds up to 160 km/h (100 mph) for VTOL ranges as high as 160 km (100 miles) on a charge.

A 100-mph eVTOL with 100-mile range you can buy as a kit plane
A 100-mph eVTOL with 100-mile range you can buy as a kit plane

Safety-wise, Tetra will be using at least three redundant flight controllers, capable of redistributing power across its 32 vertical lift props in the case of motor or flight controller failure. We're not sure how the battery pack's designed for safety, but if you get yourself high enough up, you can come down on a standard ballistic parachute.

Tetra is planning to build them and sell them as home-built experimental kit aircraft – meaning you'll be able to fly one on a private pilot's license in the US. The company is also planning to sell complete aircraft, and is looking to certify them as well, although not in the incredibly stringent commercial category most of the air taxi manufacturers are grappling with now. No prices are available as yet.

There are a few manufacturers now pushing "buy 'n' fly" personal eVTOL products that should be available in the short to medium term. Opener's BlackFly, for example, was also there at OshKosh this year, indeed performing manned flights of its unusual design, and Next UAS is also working on a simple single-seater for personal use.

Check out a short video from Tetra below.

teTra's eVTOL start to sale 2022, first to show, now reserve! / テトラ・アビエーションの販売eVTOL実機とコンセプト公開

Source: Tetra Aviation

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7 comments
7 comments
David
It's great there are so many teams and companies trying ideas and innovating. If we compare the current development of e-planes with the beginnings of powered flight, it was those designed utilising the KISS principle that succeeded; the more complex or unwieldy craft disappeared into obscurity and mirth. Tetra's proposal needs refactoring.
Towerman
Not true comparing simple aviation of the past to todays standards. Back then technology and principles of multicopter flight was the stuff of science fiction.

6 axis digital gyro's was not even conceived let alone imagined.

And the simplicity it brings in combination with electric motors and controllers to automation is unprecedented by anything.

If you followed the principles of multicopter flight since the very beginnings.
You will understand the genius pioneering work that was done of a complicated system that turns calculations into simple everyday reliable control.

Kudus to Captain KUK, your genius work contributed vastly to present day multirotor flight !

Well done Tetra, the list of contenders keep growing... And that is good for this revolutionary new industry.
Karmudjun
I like the home built kit aspect. If affordable - it might prove a great impetus to bring back a community of private pilots rather like the what the Civil Air Patrol tapped into in the pre-war days of WWII. The expense of obtaining a private pilots license is prohibitive for many people, but in the 1920's before the depression folks were scrounging their way into plane purchase and licensure - and then off to barn-storming in order to pay some expenses. What a bygone era - if the kits are affordable then maybe it will disrupt air-flight access!
Ornery Johnson
This design gets an A+ for redundancy. Loose a motor (or blade) and you'd still be safe to land. On the other hand, I'm guessing that the battery weight is distributed throughout those black wing pods. All that weight in the wings would seem to make the aircraft hard to bank, wouldn't it?
guzmanchinky
VERY cool, but somewhat awkward looking? I'm a pilot, so seeing this revolution of flight is really fun. I almost bought an Icon A5 last year but I think I'd rather have an electric toy...
Nelson Hyde Chick
Another toy for the rich as the rest of humanity is left to rot.
AladdinConnolly
Let's hope they get usable load (slightly) above 100KG the idea that even a 190 pound person with their clothes on is pushing the limits of the planes capabilities is absurd.