In traditional aircraft design, airframes and engines are designed separately and bolted together. This leads to inefficiencies due to additional drag. The approach also leads to propulsive inefficiencies via non-distributed propulsion. Hovering and VTOL requirements introduce even more complexity, size and weight to the system.
Pairing the simple architecture of a gas generator with our advanced augmentation system results in significantly superior efficiency versus typical small turbojets. It also guarantees great operability and low fuel burn at all stages of flight.
Output of the gas generator is channeled through specially designed augmentation components. The exhaust gasses entrain and accelerate ambient air. Augmentation and low exhaust temperatures enable VTOL and high maneuverability.
The complete propulsion system is a unique combination of a gas turbine and fluidic thrust augmentation that can distribute thrust across our airframe. It can be implemented in various geometric shapes, can be embedded with the airframe, and has no propellers or rotating parts. The system is used in all phases of flight.
Our novel airframe is designed to take advantage of the abilities of the propulsion system. We have demonstrated its maneuverability in flight. It has lift generating surfaces for long range propulsive efficiency, yet it is very compact, allowing VTOL operations with a small footprint.
Our distributed propulsion system allows us to create additional lift by intelligent deployment at critical locations with respect to lift generating surfaces.
We have successfully tested a full scale model in a wind tunnel. We proved the concept at speeds in excess of 150 mph, also simulating the augmentation propulsive system with promising results.
The thruster design went through several stages of testing and down selection. We have also conducted extensive tests of the gas generator and full propulsion system.
Several prototypes of the airframe have been tested in free flight at speeds in excess of 100 mph. The airframe shows remarkable stability and maneuverability.