Trek Aerospace, Inc.
Folsom, California, USA
Founded in 1999, Trek Aerospace, Inc. is a small engineering company based in Folsom, California, USA. The company has designed and made multiple vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) aircraft including its exoskeleton jetpacks using shrouded propellers in the airframe design. The company has also designed and made watercraft. Trek Aerospace also assists companies in the design, fabrication, and licensing of projects involving shrouded propellers and/or autonomous control systems.
The company states their core technology has the highest thrust to hp/kw in the industry. This allows their aircraft to carry a lot of weight in a smaller footprint. Trek’s shrouded props require less power, use fewer batteries than other battery powered aircraft, have a greater payload and have a farther range. The company has stated all their VTOL aircraft designs can be powered with a hybrid-electric power source or using batteries as their main power source (electric vertical takeoff and landing - eVTOL).
The Nightingale is a hybrid-electric VTOL or eVTOL aircraft remoted controlled or autonomous concept design which has been specifically made for emergency medical service air transporation (an air ambulance). The aircraft can hold one wheeled stretcher to transport one patient from a scene of an accident or with a medical problem to the closest hospital. There is no room for an attendant or paramedic for this aircraft. The aircraft originally had a petroleum powered engine to create the electricity for the entire aircraft but with new drone technology, this aircraft can have multiple types of power sources powering electric motors to turn the ducted propellers.
The fuselage has a tinted canopy window which lifts up to allow the stretcher to be loaded into the aircraft and there would be a climate controlled air conditioning system in the aircraft so the patient will be comfortable during the flight. The name Nightingale was choose due to the woman who founded modern nursing, Florence Nightingale. It is interesting to note that Nightingale was also a pioneer in statistics.
The original design of the aircraft has two ducted fans for propulsion with two rear stub wings for stability and lift. However, the aircraft could be modified with four ducted fans and longer wings or canard wings to increase the lifting ability and range of the aircraft. The aircraft has fixed skid type landing gear with four stationary wheels on the skids for ease of movement of the aircraft when on a vertiport or tarmac.
An important point about this aircraft design is that it was way ahead of its time with the hopes of making a safe, efficient and useful VTOL aircraft for emergency medical service air transportation. It is unknown whether this aircraft was ever made or will be made into a subscale or full scale prototype.
- Aircraft type: Hybrid-electric VTOL emergency medical services aircraft
- Piloting: Remote or autonomous
- Capacity: 1 patient
- Cruise speed: Unknown
- Range: Unknown
- Flight Time: Unknown
- Cruise altitude: Unknown
- Propellers: 2 ducted propellers
- Electric Motors: 2 electric motors
- Power source: Hybrid-electric
- Fuselage: Carbon fiber composite
- Windows: Canopy over cockpit
- Wings: Rear stub wings
- Landing gear: Fixed skid type landing gear, with four fixed wheels for ease of movement of the aircraft when on a landing pad, tarmac or hangar
- Safety features: The aircraft has an emergency whole aircraft ballistic parachute