Flying taxi travelling at 320 km/h

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Named J-2000, the flying taxi is expected to fly at a speed of 320 km/h and have a similar range of 320 km. The real excitement is the engine design.

Several companies have announced in recent years that they are working on developing flying taxis. In Paris, for example, the Volocopter is currently undergoing tests, but Airbus has also joined the race. Although the development work is still in progress, one thing is already clear: in the future, flying machines such as these will be used to transport passengers over short and long distances.

The US company Jetoptera wants to change that. The company has started to develop a flying taxi that can take off and land vertically (VTOL), but would not use a single propeller. The idea came from Dyson, which had previously developed a bladeless fan. According to New Atlas, the propulsion system being developed for the J-2000 is called the fluidic propulsion system (FPS) and essentially uses the flow of air to provide the vehicle with the right amount of thrust.

The flying taxi uses four of these engines to take off: two small ones at the front and two large ones at the back. The first two are retracted into the fuselage after take-off, so that the flight is ensured by the two at the rear. The J-2000 would be capable of speeds of 320 km/h, according to its developers, but later versions could reach speeds of up to 640 km per hour.

Another advantage of the new engine is that it is 30 per cent lighter than its conventional counterparts due to the absence of redundant components, which in turn allows for 50 per cent lower fuel consumption. The engines are currently powered by a compressor using conventional fuel, but the plan is to replace this with a battery solution in the future. It weighs 2000 pounds (or about 907 kilograms) and has a range of 321 km. It is not yet known exactly when it will be commercially viable.

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