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CycloTech Passenger Demonstrator

Passenger Demonstrator
CycloTech GmbH
Linz, Austria
www.cyclotech.at

Cyclotech GmbH was found in 2004 in Austria as IAT 21 and has logged more than 15 years of research into its rotor technology. Its core business is the development and optimization of Cyclogyro rotors for gasoline, hybrid-electric or electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft. Three patents have been made, another is pending and three more are in preparation (as of June 2020). While the company has already gained investments from Breeze Invest, the company is seeking more financial investors. 

The Cyclogyro rotors are compact, efficient for long distance flight, precise airflow control during VTOL flight, excellent maneuverability and provide a very stable transition from vertical to forward flight. 

A Cyclogyro rotor has multiple blades about a central axis and which are connected to a rotatably-mounted hub. When more power is applied turning the rotors faster, this generates thrust. Each rotor wheel is controlled independently allowing almost instantaneous power changes which allow for a more stable aircraft when compared to a plane or helicopter. 

An advantage of the Cyclogyro rotor is it is smaller than standard propellers normally used on aircraft being designed for Urban Air Mobility. The company states their rotors take up 70% less space is required per passenger using their specialized rotors, which reduces the costs of operating the aircraft. 

The core of the drive concept was established by Ernst Schneider and the Voith GmbH technology group nearly 100 years ago, and patented as the Voith Schneider Propeller (VSP). The drive provides high maneuverability, and ships equipped with two or more VSP can move in nearly every direction or perform a stationary turn. 

The goal of the passenger eVTOL is for Urban Air Mobility (UAM) and other VTOL mobility markets. The company states there is a 20% greater than cost benefit of their Cyclogyro rotors when compared to tilt-wing or full electric helicopter concepts.

Cyclotech is also developing a UAV Demonstrator and Compound Heliopter design.

Over three years (2017-2020), CycloTech developed and tested nine different rotor prototypes. The company resulted in "the largest database and broadest experience in this field worldwide." The latest prototype rotor being tested had these characteristics:

  • Diameter (mm): 350 (13.8 in)
  • Spanwidth (mm): 420 (16.5 in)
  • Rotation (rpm): 3,100
  • Number of blades: 5
  • Max. thrust (N): 247 (56 lb)

The company noted that comprehensive wind tunnel tests showed a significant performance increase in forward flight, which was also predicted in the computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations.

In September 2020, CycloTech reported that the current Cyclogyro rotors had been "fully lightweight optimized and have passed all performance and endurance tests. They are ready for integration into a flight demonstrator." The company was readying a flight demonstrator of approximately 80kg (180 lb) take-off weight equipped with four Cyclogyro rotors, as a final proof of concept to elevate the development: "By Q4 2020 CycloTech will be ready to fly the demonstrator proving the agility and advantages of the technology."

CycloTech full-electric 4-seater Airtaxi specifications:
MTOW 2,200 kg 4850 lb
Payload 400 kg 882 lb
Length 700 cm 275.6 in
Width 500 cm 197 in
Range 85 km 53 mi
Flight time 40 min
Cruise Speed 150 km/h 93 MPH
Rotors 4 or 8 for redundancy
Max. Hover Thrust 30,000 N 6,744 lb
Max. Drive Power 1,660 kW 2,226 HP
Battery 760 kg @ 230 Wh/kg 1,676 lb @ 230 Wh/lb
Rotor dimension 100 x 120 cm 39 in x 47 in
Rotation speed 1,600 rpm

 

  • Aircraft type: Gasoline powered VTOL, hybrid-electric VTOL or eVTOL 
  • Capacity: 4
  • Propellers: 4  Cyclogyro rotors
  • Electric Motors: 4
  • Windows: Panoramic windows providing spectacular views
  • Landing gear: Skid type

CycloTech has also started the development of a Cyclogyro rotor as auxiliary system of a high precision inspection drone for use in harsh and tight environments. Partners are welcome to join the project.

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