Teledrone Mark I (defunct)
Skelmersdale, Lancashire, United Kingdom
Teledrone Ltd is based in the United Kingdom and was incorporated to design an affordable electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft for Urban Air Mobility (UAM). Leading the Teledrone project is Colin Hilton, with over 10,000 command hours on Boeing and Airbus types and a qualified trainer. Previous inventions of his were financed by the British Technology Group (BTG), and demonstrated to Margaret Thatcher’s Minister of Technology and the National Physical Laboratory.
Hilton works with a private investor with aviation interests, Peter Day, and a commercial drone manufacturer in order to to steer development of prototypes. He sees the electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft being used for reconnaissance, infantry maneuvers and the leisure market.
The Mark I is a 2⁄3 scale prototype designed for the second phase of the GoFly Prize competition. While the Mark I drone was mostly static-tested, just one flight of the airframe took place prior to modification in the form of the Mark II. The target cruise speed for the original version was 93 km/h (58 mph, 50 kt) at around 457 m (1,500 ft), and a range of 8 km (5 miles).
The design was based upon Doctor Who, a British science-fiction TV show whose main character travels through space and time in a British blue police box (callbox). Hilton chose the color red, since the red public callbox is already a British icon. Since one can put electric motors, propellers and a controller on just about anything to make it fly, the Teledrone was invented.
One goal with this version was also to keep the weight under 25 kg (55 lb), allowing the aircraft to be registered as a drone in the USA and not a passenger vehicle.
Hilton saw the aircraft as being remotely controlled prior to the passenger having the same controller in the aircraft to allow them to pilot the aircraft themselves, with future versions being autonomous. One application for the Teledrone would be to program a route to fly a child back and forth to school.
Teledrone has the goal of making a very low cost eVTOL aircraft which is easy to fly and very affordable. Hilton wants to make his Teledrone to be made similar to an Ikea product. You order it online, it gets shipped to you in the morning, you build it and are flying it that afternoon.
Teledrone has the goal of making a low cost eVTOL aircraft that is easy to fly with construction along the lines of an IKEA product. Ordered online, shipped the same day and flying that evening. This will allow individuals, companies, organizations and the military to use eVTOL aircraft for affordable Urban Air Mobility (UAM) and related applications.
Details on Teledrone's other aircraft may be found on the Teledrone, Teledrone Mark II, Teledrone Mark III, and Teledrone Mark IV pages.
- Aircraft type: Subscale eVTOL demonstrator
- Capacity: No passengers
- Cruise speed: 93 km/h (58 mph, 50 kt)
- Cruise altitude: 457 m (1,500 ft)
- Range: 8 km (5 miles) at cruise speed and altitude
- Empty weight: 25 kg (55 lb)
- Battery type: LiPo batteries made for ease-of-use swapping
- Teledrone website
- Teledrone Blogspot website
- Collin Hilton YouTube Channel
- Article: GoFly Enters Phase II, Vertiflite, July/August 2018
- Article: Meet the Teams: Get to Know Team Teledrone, From the United Kingdom, Go Fly Prize, Jan. 15, 2019
- Article: GoFly Hits 40, eVTOL News, Feb. 6, 2019
- Video: Wiring Test 1, Colin Hilton, Dec. 18, 2019
- Video: Wiring Test 2, Colin Hilton, Dec. 18, 2019