Saturday, May 1, 2021

Mayday (Mayday Mayday?)

Been forwarded this recently on Instagram and figure it's a fairly recent manifestation, although with eVTOL and videos it's often hard to tell. The first recorded attempt to stand and effectively 'surf' a powered platform or airboard of this kind is attributed to a Canadian guy (and a lake, inevitably) and going back several years now.

But they do keep popping up, not least in Florida with Dragon's Airboard (which has the addition of ski-poles to hold onto). Either way you're pivoting the airframe around a fulcrum to tilt the array of propellers in the required direction, whether that fulcrum is a moveable part of the airframe itself or simply your ankles, which are equally able to flex.

It's tempting to follow suit, because the advantage these powered platforms have over drones is that the motors need not be constantly accelerated and decelerated by the flight controller that otherwise steers the craft, such that the batteries last for that much longer. Beside this, they are commendably compact in view of their flatness.

Tempting as it is however, I shall defer from the pursuit of an underslung outline of the kind because they could be classed as a dangerous (albeit exhilarating) sport. We looked yesterday at the broad division of eVTOL types and at the personal end of the scale like this they fall into two categories viz. weight-shifted and computer-controlled.

Ultimately they could be considered separate niches altogether, the one being a form of recreation per se and the other a more prosaic means of traveling from A to B. The reasons I prefer the latter in the longer term are multifarious:

Firstly, it's been done and there's nothing much extra that I could bring to the table.

Secondly, what intellectual property we've filed relates to a combination of drones pitched at different levels around an accommodation booth that may yet extend to the height of a telephone box (and hence the moniker).

Thirdly, digital control of vehicles cannot be uninvented and it seems a shame not to tale advantage of it along with every other form of transport.

Fourthly, I want a vehicle anyone can use from the get-go,

Fifthly, I'd like to be able to provide kit-builds that lend themselves to flat-packs, and the drone appearing in my last post is ideally adapted to these means.

Sixth, although there's eight propellers on the TELEDRONE too they are packaged in a modular design that allows the airframe to be readily disassembled for transport.

To prove this last point that photo of the 'DRONE in the last post took place in a studio, and to get there the upper quad occupied the roof-rack, the lower quad the flatbed of the trailer and the accommodation booth itself the trunk of the car.

Accordingly ~ and these projects are a long haul that require the dedication and re-dedication of an almost monastic pursuit ~ from hereon in expect the aforesaid design to be the goal of endless improvement and an ongoing program of 'proof-of-concept'.