Bartini Flying Car
Zhukovski, Russia

Startup Bartini unveiled its eVTOL concept in July 2017, announcing that it is working on two variants — a 2-seater and 4-seater — with the intention of providing an air taxi service. The company is named for the Italian-Soviet aircraft designer Robert Bartini who discovered the “Bartini Effect” — which is the increase in thrust created by mounting co-axial counter-rotating thrusters within a nacelle.

The company has built a 50% prototype to prove that rotating ducted thrusters, in conjunction with the aircraft’s aerodynamic shaping, reduces power consumption in cruise; the model is expected to fly in 2018. Bartini plans to launch the aircraft with a demonstration flight with the 2-seat version by the end of 2018, followed by a possible 4-seater in 2020. The company is also considering hydrogen fuel-cells for the future, which would give it a 4x range increase.

According to the Bartini White Paper: “Technology and configuration (coaxial variable pitch propellers in a quad copter convertiplane with aerodynamics of the carrying wing, patented) decrease power consumption up to seven times and ensure long-distance flights at altitudes comparable to small helicopters or airplanes. Expected market price may stay within [$120k, per Bartini] due to absence of complex components, wings, ailerons, chassis, moving airframe parts, as well as simple assembly processes. High degree of body-shape variability within the aerodynamic solution, no need for takeoff/landing infrastructure, safety due to 8 motors and coaxial propellers in 4 engine groups and human-factor reduction, noise-levels within urban regulation.”

The startup was founded in 2015, and is currently represented by a Delaware, US corporation Bartini, Inc. Its research and development (R&D) center is based in Zhukovskiy, an aviation engineers’ city on the southern outskirts of Moscow, Russia. The initial funding has come from angel investors; it is part of the consortium.

The consortium is the union of 10 companies (and growing) united by the goal to provide technology solutions to the emerging market of city air taxi. It is also a Technology unit for Technology and Business Incubator for air taxi and mass urban aviation, whose task is to incubate developers of air taxi engaged in designing eVTOLs, automation of charging, maintenance and parking of flying cars. It aims at facilitating businesses that sell urban passenger transportation, as well as related products, technologies and services along the end-to-end supply chain: starting with R&D for aerial vehicles components and ending at “retail outlets” — landing pads and mobile apps.

Bartini 2-seat concept
Bartini 2-seat concept
Bartini development plans

Bartini aircraft from Aug 2017 white paper

Bartini Characteristics (updated August 2017)

Seats 4
Width overall 14.8 ft 4.5 m
Length overall 17.1 ft 5.2 m
Height overall 5.6 ft 1.7 m
Range ~93 miles 150 km (up to 550 km)*
Payload 882 lb 400 kg
Take-off weight 2425 lb 1,100 kg
Max altitude above ground 3300 ft 1000 m
Cruising speed ~186 mph 300 km/h
Disc loading 26.9 lb/ft2 146 kg/m2
Battery weight  705 lb 320 kg
Battery density 200 Wh/kg (up to 700 Wh/kg)*
Battery capacity 64 kWh (up to 224 kWh)*
Power output 320 kW
Thrusters 8 @ 40 kW each
Energy used per flight 51 kWh
— 1 min in hover 5.3 kWh
— 30 min in cruise 45.9 kWh
Reserve energy 13 kWh
Energy consumption per 1 km 0.34 kWh
— per 1 km in cruise 0.30 kWh/m
— per 1 min in cruise 1.5 kWh/min
Flight time 30 minutes
Lift-to-drag ratio 4-5

*projected performance with hydrogen fuel cells