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TCab Tech E20 (technology demonstrator)

TCab Tech E20 eVTOL technology demonstrator during a test flight

 

E20 (technology demonstrator)
TCab Tech
Shanghai, China
www.tcabtech.com

TCab Tech was founded in May 2021 in Shanghai, China by Yon Huang Ng, CEO and other engineers. The company's goal is to make reliable and zero emission electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft for advanced air mobility (AAM) aerial ride-sharing for the general public. The meaning of TCab translates to "time taxi" which is the mission of the company to offer affordable and time-efficient air transportation to the general public. (Image credits: TCab Tech)

The company foresees using Artificial Intelligence to help their aircraft navigate through complex urban air space to ensure safety for all urban air travelers. The E20 passenger aircraft will be built in China and manufactured by the Shanghai TCab Technology Co., Ltd. After two rounds of funding earlier in 2021, the company raised nearly $10 million USD. Reported in February 2023, the company has had another funding round, raising 100 million yuan (approximately $14.8 million USD).

E20 uncrewed eVTOL technology demonstrator
The E20 technology demonstrator is an uncrewed eVTOL skeleton fuselage aircraft used by the company to complete a series of tests including system wide avionics debugging and ballast durability assessment. The company made both tethered and untethered test flights with the technology demonstrator.

The aircraft has six propellers, six eletric motors and batteries for its power source. Four of the propellers are tilt-propellers and two propellers are VTOL-only propellers. The fuselage is rectangular in shape and there are three perpendicular booms with each propeller on the end of each boom. The technology demonstrator has the same take-off weight, power arrangement and system equipment as the full-scale E20 prototype aircraft. The aircraft has made more than 150 flights in 2023 with its two ton maximum takeoff weight. The landing gear is has fixed skid landing gear with two perpendicular cross bars to inhibit the aircraft from tilting over on either side during takeoff or landing.

A TCab Tech video provides a drone's view of one of the test flight and shows how stable the aircraft flies.  In the video, you can see the black boxes of ballast.

Future developments
The first market the company foresees to be successful with their E20 eVTOL aircraft will be in the tourism industry. TCab Tech expects its production aircraft to cost in the seven million yuan or approximately $960,900.00 USD. After that, TCab Tech expects their aircraft will be used in the on-demand urban air taxi industry.

E20 technology demonstrator drone view

E20 technology demonstrator drone view

E20 technology demonstrator front view

E20 technology demonstrator front view

E20 technology demonstrator top view

E20 technology demonstrator top view

Specifications:

  • Aircraft type: eVTOL technology demonstrator
  • Piloting: Remote piloting
  • Capacity: No passengers
  • Maximum takeoff weight: Over 2 tons
  • Propellers: 6 propellers
  • Electric motors: 6 electric motors
  • Power source: Batteries
  • Fuselage: Rectangular open skeleton fuselage and three perpendicular booms made from a metal alloy
  • Landing gear: Fixed skid landing gear with two perpendicular cross bars (for side-to-side stability)
  • Safety features: Distributed Electric Propulsion (DEP), provides safety through redundancy for its passengers and/or cargo. DEP means having multiple propellers (or ducted fans) and motors on the aircraft so if one or more propellers (ducted fans) or motors fail, the other working propellers (or ducted fans) and motors can safely land the aircraft. There are also redundancies of critical components in the sub-systems of the aircraft.

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