JetPack Aviation company is not afraid of big challenges. As the company’s name suggests, it originally worked on the development of rocket backpacks. In fact, great progress has already been made here. The first test flights have already been successful. However, there is still no market-ready product for end customers. Nevertheless, the startup has now shifted the focus a little. Around seventy percent of the available resources are currently being invested in the development of the so-called Speeder Air Utility Vehicle. This is a kind of flying modular platform that can perform different tasks depending on the configuration. For example, it should be conceivable in the future to use the Speeder as an autonomous drone. However, one should refrain from transports within cities. Because it is driven by a jet engine and is correspondingly loud.
The prototype 2.0 is already in progress
Theoretically, it is even conceivable to convert the aircraft into a kind of mini fighter jet. Even speeds on the edge of the sound limit should be possible here. In a completely different direction is also thought. So it should be possible to use the speeder as a kind of platform for firefighting at great heights. All of this is currently still a dream of the future. However, the first practical tests are already taking place. Here the modular construction is used as a flying motorcycle. The developers are currently still in an intermediate phase. The tests with the first prototype have so far been successfully completed. The experience gained was used to make targeted improvements. The design was also slightly changed. If you like, the prototype 1.5 is currently being used. In just a few months, version 2.0 should be ready for use and already look like a flying motorbike.
The US military has also expressed interest
Here it should also be possible to turn the manned flying object into an unmanned and autonomously flying drone. The Speeder is also characterized by enormous versatility in other respects. This allows the pilot to choose between different wing settings. This should make speeds of up to 644 kilometers per hour possible. Other settings, in turn, ensure a higher range. Theoretically, there are numerous options available to the hovering motorcyclist. The development has now also attracted the interest of the US military. The US Air Force has launched its own funding program for innovative high-flyers, with the Speeder being one of the favourites. At the same time, the developers also want to continue working on civilian products. For example, there are plans to sell a slimmed-down version of the flying motorcycle to private individuals. They don’t even have to have a pilot’s license – but they have to be content with a top speed of 100 km/h.
Via: New Atlas