Just how much do we want a flying car? If it looks as dangerous as this one Thorston Crijns built, some of us might think, “umm….maybe not.” On the other hand, one has to commend Crijns for the insane amount of engineering necessary to get this thing off the ground. Crijns’ flying car has 16 separate motors and props as well as a pack of lithium-ion batteries to power it. Keeping it lightweight is critical, so the computer-optimized frame is made of lightweight 6060 aluminum. The control system is the MultiWii Autopilot, a well-known gadget that can adjust the power on each individual motor.
The flying machine weighs 110 pounds, and Crijns weighs 132 pounds, so the machine lifted 242 pounds off the ground, several feet. The vehicle has a total thrust of 282 pounds, so theoretically it should fly–and fly it did, for a little while. Crijns said he has had the idea for a while to build a multicopter that could transport people.
As a firmware engineer, Crijns quickly realized that he would have to “dive into unfamiliar disciplines like mechanical stress calculations and circuit design” in order to realize his vision. He started by working on smaller projects and prototypes to get a feel for the technologies involved. He said he picked electricity as the power required without needing fuel. Gas power can run longer he said, so a disadvantage is that the lithium-ion system will underdeliver in total power.
It is unclear what Crijns’ overall vision for the flying car might be, but his commitment to the process seems irrefutable — just looking at the calculations involved on his website shows no matter what the future of this vehicle, Crijns future is likely secure.
Images via Thorston Crijns