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XPeng AeroHT Magic Cloud (defunct)

Heitech Magic Cloud

 

Magic Cloud (defunct)
XPeng AeroHT
Guangzhou, Guangdong, China
www.aeroht.com

With funding from XPeng Motors, XPeng AeroHT was founded in 2020 as one of its subdivisions and is located in Guangzhou, Guangdong, China. XPeng AeroHT is in the business of designing and manufacturing electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) passenger aircraft for advanced air mobility (AAM). The company was originally founded as Heitech in 2013 by Zhao Deli in Dongguan, Guangdong, China and was later purchased by XPeng Motors. He Xiaopeng is the Chairman and CEO of XPeng Motors and the Chairman of XPeng AeroHT. Zhao Deli is currently the president of XPeng AeroHT, Wang Tan is the co-founder, vice president and chief designer of XPeng AeroHT and Zheng Congwei is the vice president of XPeng AeroHT. (Image credit: XPeng AeroHT)

XPeng Motors was founded in 2014 by He Xiaopeng, Henry Xia and He Tao and is a leading Chinese all-electric vehicle and technology company that designs, develops and manufactures intelligent automobiles that are seamlessly integrated with the Internet and utilize the latest advances in artificial intelligence. The company's headquarters are located in Guangzhou, China.

The company's manufacturing philosophy centers around quality, continuous improvement, flexibility and high operating efficiency. XPeng's goal is to make smart electric vehicles with technology and data, and shape the consumer mobility experience of the future. XPeng went public in the U.S. in August 2020 and has completed a dual-primary listing in Hong Kong.

When Zhao Deli was very young, he always liked electronics, science and had the dream to fly. In 2008, Zhao by chance, saw a group of people flying remote-controlled model aircraft which sparked his interest in flying again. He began to work on, study and learn to make model aircraft, including drones and helicopters and learned how to make them fly.

After making electric drones for several years (including a hybrid-electric drone), Zhao started his own company in 2010 to sell drones. The company created five different drone models to manufacture and sell. Then around 2016, Zhao read about a hover surfboard from Canada, this information was the catalyst to for him to begin building an eVTOL hoverbike for one passenger.

He started out funding himself with his own money, by selling his home and borrowing money from friends. He then attracted investors to keep his research going. After his drone company went bankrupt, Zhao Deli attracted an investment of $2.8 million (USD), all from Chinese venture capitalists and XPeng AeroHT was formed. Before XPeng AeroHT was formed, Deli's two previous and now defunct eVTOL companies were named GroundAero and Heitech Aeronautics & Astronautics.

Magic Cloud eVTOL multicopter hoverbike prototype, now defunct
The Magic Cloud is a one passenger eVTOL prototype hoverbike and is now a defunct aircraft. The hoverbike has a cruise speed of 44 mph (71 km/h), a flight time of 30 minutes and can fly has high as 9,843 feet (3,000 meters). However, the hoverbike would typically be used for low altitude flight.

The multicopter has eight propellers, has eight electric motors and uses Lithium-ion batter packs for its power source. The propellers are stacked and are fitted on the ends of four booms. There are two propellers on each boom. Each boom is located on the corners of the fuselage and are approximately at a 45 degree angle. The aircraft has a maximum payload weight of 220 lbs (100 kg) and a maximum takeoff weight of 564 lb (256 kg).

Zhao tested the flying bike remotely 1,559 times before flying it himself. On July 23, 2018 on the 1,560 flight test, Zhao flew the hoverbike successfully in Tangxia Town, Dongguan City, China (south of Guangdong Province).

Early estimates of the price of the production model are in the range of $5,500.00 and $7,200.00 USD and the goal was to start serial production in 2019 but there is no word if production ever took place. Deli believes the crewed hoverbike can be an effective solution to ease traffic congestion, as well as for use by fire departments and the police.

The next eVTOL hoverbike Deli created and flew was the Air F1.

Specifications:

  • Aircraft type: eVTOL passenger prototype hoverbike
  • Piloting: 1 person
  • Cruise speed: 44 mph (72 km/h)
  • Flight time: 30 minutes
  • Cruise altitude: 10-15 feet (3-4.5 meters)
  • Payload weight: 110-220 lb (50-100 kg)
  • Maximum takeoff weight: 564 lb (256 kg)
  • Propellers: 8 propellers
  • Electric Motors: 8 electric motors
  • Power source: Lithium-ion batteries
  • Cockpit. Open cockpit (similar to motorcycle seating)
  • Fuselage: Light weight material
  • Landing gear: Fixed skid landing gear
  • Safety Features: Distributed Electric Propulsion (DEP), provides safety through redundancy for its passengers and/or cargo. DEP means having multiple propellers and motors on the aircraft so if one or more motors or propellers fail, the other working motors and propellers can safely land the aircraft.

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