Aircraft

XTI Aircraft Company offers stakes in the TriFan 600 VTOL business plane

XTI Aircraft Company offers st...
Artist's concept of the TriFan 600, which is the subject of an equity crowdfunding campaign
Artist's concept of the TriFan 600, which is the subject of an equity crowdfunding campaign
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Artist's concept of the TriFan 600, which is the subject of an equity crowdfunding campaign
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Artist's concept of the TriFan 600, which is the subject of an equity crowdfunding campaign
The TriFan 600 design has three vertical lift fans
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The TriFan 600 design has three vertical lift fans
Diagram of the TriFan 600
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Diagram of the TriFan 600
Top view of the TriFan 600
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Top view of the TriFan 600
The TriFan 600 has VTOL capability
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The TriFan 600 has VTOL capability
TriFan 600 interior
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TriFan 600 interior
The TriFan 600 will have the speed and range of a conventional business jet
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The TriFan 600 will have the speed and range of a conventional business jet
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Crowdfunding is usually associated with consumer goods like smartwatches and drones, but XTI Aircraft Company of Denver, Colorado is hoping to score a double first with its TriFan 600. Pitched as the first commercially certified high-speed, long-range Vertical Takeoff and Landing (VTOL) airplane that combines the vertical lift capability of a helicopter with the speed of an airplane, it's also the first major aviation project to launch an equity crowdfunding campaign in the wake of new rules approved by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Under development for two years, the TriFan 600 is designed as a six-seat, fixed-wing, composite-construction, fly-by-wire airplane with both VTOL capabilities and the speed and range of a conventional business jet. It would carry a pilot and five passengers at a cruising speed of 340 knots (400 mph, 644 km/h) and have a ceiling of 30,000 ft (9,000 m). Its two high-performance turboshaft engines give it a range of 800 to 1,200 mi (1,300 to 1,900 km), depending on takeoff method and payload.

Meanwhile, three ducted fans behind a sliding hatch provide vertical lift. One selling point of the aircraft is that by eliminating the need to travel to and from airports and transport passengers door-to-door (or helipad-to-helipad), it would be competitive even with faster conventional aircraft. The TriFan 600 will initially be targeted at business customers and is expected to cost from US$10 to $12 million.

The TriFan 600 has VTOL capability
The TriFan 600 has VTOL capability

According to the company, the TriFan 600 has a choice of interior fitouts, ranging from luxury business seating to medical evacuation or air ambulatory configurations.

On Tuesday, XTI Aircraft announced an equity crowdfunding campaign that the company refers to as the "first fundraising effort of its kind in aviation history." Based on new rules approved by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, backers can buy a stake in the company. The campaign is part of a larger fundraising effort that is also looking to attract venture capital, private equity, and high net-worth investors.

The new company boasts some high-powered officers, including Vice Chairman Jeffrey Pino, who is the former president and chief executive of Sikorsky Aircraft, board member Charlie Johnson, who is the former president of Cessna Aircraft Company, and Chief Engineer and board member Dennis Olcott, who served as chief engineer for Adam Aircraft and the PiperJet program.

If the fundraising effort is successful,the company aims to get the first proof of concept prototype completed intwo-and-a-half years before building another one or two prototypes for furthertesting and FAA certification.

The TriFan 600 will have the speed and range of a conventional business jet
The TriFan 600 will have the speed and range of a conventional business jet

"We view equity crowdfunding as a creative way to involve everyone as true stakeholders working together to pioneer this all new way to fly," says Brody. "It's a way to turn all of our supporters into potential stockholders by providing the public a once-in-a-lifetime chance to get in early on something truly revolutionary."

The video below introduces the TriFan 600.

Source: XTI Aircraft

The Future is Now. Lift Up. Jet Out.

View gallery - 7 images
12 comments
Bob809
A very moving video. I like the way it has been done. I wish them every success, and after all, why should they not succeed? Like the aircraft too.
Bob
Impressive group of company officers but the projected parameters sound pretty exaggerated. A little too much artistic license as well. Some of the drawings show the passenger load to be in front of all three turbofans. That would create CG difficulty in take off and landing. Fuel capacity for three hungry turbofans would be quite large even if one was shut down while cruising. A design with the center of lift moved forward, a cruise of 300mph, and a range of 300-400 miles sounds much more likely.
Mirmillion
Beauty, let's do it...
Madlyb
Anyone that backs this venture better have some serious patience.
Synergy was on Kickstarter in May of 2012 and they still don't even have a working version of the craft, much less completed any certification work and this aircraft is much more complex, so unless the backing is much higher, it will not see air time in this decade.
Stephen N Russell
Seen this in Sci Fic shows in 60s, or similar, I say Yes produce this
Matt Fletcher
I love seeing these poorly designed VTOL vehicles. Save your money because there are a number of well made VTOL vehicles already being built, they're called Helicopters look it up.
ChgoSTrider
Be really interesting to see if Synergy is able to raise the tremendous capital required to design, establish production, FAA certify an aircraft. Probably looking at over $100M, and possibly more. Much more.
You know what they say about making money in the aviation business?
"How does one make a small fortune in the aircraft business. First, you start with a big one..."
jerryd
Not really viable aerodynamically. The mission would be more easily done with a 2 12' props tilt wing at 50% of the fuel consumption, 20% less weight. An even more simple based on the Flying flapjack, no moving ducts, wings needed would have even better economy. With enough power it would jump into the air and land in 50-100'.
John in Brisbane
Nice looking design. Love to see it in the air with the right details. Sadly, I know that aircraft start-ups don't have a good history regarding delivering and becoming viable. That doesn't mean that there is no room for innovation, just that I'll remain cautious for now.
More practically, I wonder about the economics of those fans - I'm assuming they've got a plan to make a lift fan also suitable for high speed flight. If so, that's a good trick. I'm sure there is a way to do it. Good luck!
Timelord
Not very useful in the post-9/11 world. Big cities like NYC have placed major restrictions on where aircraft can fly. You won't be flying to your office or construction sites anytime soon.