Terrafugia, Inc., developer of the Transition Roadable Aircraft, or “Flying Car,” released specifications and computer graphics of the next generation design at AirVenture. The improvements to the design are based on data acquired during drive and flight testing of the Proof of Concept (POC) Transition, as well as “extensive computer-aided design and optimization,” according to company officials.
The recent grant of 110 pounds by the FAA for the Transition within the Light Sport Aircraft category allows the next generation design to incorporate automotive-style safety features currently unavailable in other light aircraft, officials noted. Advanced computational fluid dynamics (CFD) with Fluent, finite element analysis (FEA) with CATIA V5 and simulated dynamic crash testing — complete with airbag deployment and digital crash test dummies — have all been used to optimize the design so the vehicle will meet the stringent Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards, officials reported.
Features in the next generation design include:
- Automotive-style crash safety features, including an energy absorbing crush structure in the nose of the vehicle and a rigid safety cage to protect the occupants.
- A customized touch-screen interface in the cockpit.
- An improved wing with an optimized airfoil and a folding mechanism that operates smoothly and safely from inside the cockpit.
- A pusher propeller with an open empennage that makes use of the 100-hp Rotax 912S mid-mounted engine in flight and is locked in place when driving.
- Rear-wheel drive with a continuously variable transmission (CVT) and tuned independent suspension for responsive road handling.
For more information: Terrafugia.com