If you’re one of the many people dreaming of owning a flying motorcycle in the not-too-distant future, then boy do I have good news for you. What we have here today is a prototype of just that—a flying motorcycle, or jetski, or whatever you want to call this contraption. It’s made by a company you may be familiar with—JetPack Aviation, under its new sub-brand Mayman Aerospace, and is surprisingly close to becoming a reality.
JetPack Aviation has demonstrated the benefits of its efforts in the form of the flight-ready P2 Speeder prototype after shifting its primary focus away from jetpacks, and onto its Speeder Air Utility Vehicle (AUV). The Speeder made its premiere at the Draper Venture Network CEO Summit in California, under JetPack Aviation's new Mayman Aerospace brand, which has been formed to produce mini Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL) Speeders for a variety of uses.
The P2 Speeder, which is roughly the size of a motorcycle, is the company's third full-scale prototype on the way to a final, production-ready aircraft. It has an eye-catching, shiny angular carbon fibre fuselage, and ergonomic pilot position built for aerodynamic performance to enhance flying efficiency. As for its power plant, it gets a total of eight jet engines that run on standard Zero Net Carbon or Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF).
Obviously, safety is a top priority when it comes to vehicles of this nature. Luckily, the Speeder is equipped with a patented onboard computer system that rapidly rebalances engine power in case of engine problems. It’s supposedly really easy to use, too, with getting into the air being as simple as climbing on and pushing a button. While the prototype on display was manned, the Speeder has a modular design that may be adapted for autonomous and remotely-piloted operation, which would vastly broaden the aircraft's possible applications.
“We launched JetPack Aviation a decade ago, and the name has served development of our JetPack technology well, but as we look to the future, we needed a brand that clearly defines our professional, as opposed to consumer, Speeder product and markets,’” said David Mayman, the CEO of Mayman Aerospace, in a report by New Atlas.
“Mayman Aerospace is pushing the outer limits of VTOL flight and will continue to innovate and incorporate new technologies including hydrogen powered turbine engines, electric fanjets and turbofan propulsion, complex ‘sense and avoid’ sensors for autonomous swarming, and potentially even supersonic flight,” he concluded.
According to the business, it is working with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to get the Speeder licensed and is in advanced talks with potential clients in national security, essential cargo, disaster relief, and other sectors that could benefit greatly from such technology. The current prototype's initial remotely controlled flight testing sessions are set to commence in the third quarter of this year, with piloted flights following closer to the end of the year.