E-volo is an ambitious startup. They want to be the first, environmentally friendly, emission-free private helicopter. Hence, the VC200 Volocopter. ( website at: http://www.e-volo.com/)
Based in Karlsruhe, Germany, the company has received several technical awards, and much consumer and press attention since their maiden flight in 2013.
With a carbon-fibre chassis and eighteen electric rotors, the expected payload is targeted at 450kg. Investors have taken note and sponsors amount to a notable list of technical and industry partners that assure future R&D progress toward a robust testing and development program in 2015.
Right now, the single seater has a flight time of 20 minutes. The target for the commercial version is an ambitious 1 hour. The two seater is targeted to achieve a speed of 100km/h, a minimum altitude of 6500 ft, a take-off weight of 450kg. When the commercial version will be available is not yet announced. Based on interest at the AERO aviation show in Friedrichshafen in Lake Constance (Europe’s largest General Aviation trade fair) the company is encouraged and potential buyers are excited.
The following video is from e-volo’s interview at the AERO general aviation show (April, 2014):
The Volocopter is not a helicopter. Unique differences include:
1) Volocopter has only one joystick to control all flight functions. There are no pedals
2) All the rotors mount fixed-pitch propellers. Direction and pitch is achieved by varying the speed of each of the 18 propellers.
3) Should one or several rotors fail during flight, speed of the remaining blades would be electronically adjusted to compensate automatically.