Startup Introduces Build-it-Yourself Personal Aircraft

The company aims to "make everyone a pilot."

Swedish startup Jetson Aero is joining the personal aircraft game.

Its electric vertical-takeoff-and-landing aircraft is called Jetson One, and users can assemble it themselves. It is also classified as an ultralight, which means owners do not need a pilot's license to fly it.

The eVOTL moves Jetson toward fulfilling its mission, which reads, “We intend to make everyone a pilot.” If it comforts those uneasy about unlicensed citizens flying around, Jetson also says on its site that “safety is our No. 1 priority.”

Since the Jetson One falls under the category of an ultralight, its performance and capacities are limited. Jalopnik reports that it must weigh less than 254 pounds, fuel capacity cannot exceed five gallons, and it can only travel at a maximum speed of 55 knots, or 63 miles per hour. Last, but not least, it can only carry one occupant. 

The One features four large rotors which sit inches from an open cockpit. It also possesses an all-aluminum space airframe, which weighs 190 pounds and cannot be flown by a pilot who weighs more than 210 pounds. Flight controls are a 3-axis joystick and throttle lever. The flight time is 20 minutes with a 187-pound pilot, and the top-level flight speed is the required 63 miles per hour. 

Additional safety capabilities include the ability to fly on only three of its rotors, a flight computer with triple layers of redundancy, and a hands-free hover feature that can attempt to avoid obstacles and utilize a ballistic parachute. 

When a customer purchases the One, it will be shipped in a 50% completed state. The buyer will be responsible for finishing building it. 

This $92,000 eVTOL is already sold out for 2022, but Jetson is taking orders for 2023. The 2022 orders are expected to arrive in the fall of next year.

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