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Promising urban tiltrotor Bell lost two fans and became electric

The American company Bell Helicopter has updated the concept of urban tiltrotor presented last year. The summer unit will be equipped with an electric fan. A new version of Flight Global will be published.

In recent years, several companies began to create small summer vehicles with passenger transportation in an urban environment. Uber Elevate, which is dedicated to the development of four-seater electric air taxi. The program involves several companies.

Bell Helicopter

However, Bell is working on its urban aircraft, the Nexus, a concept that was introduced last year. Presentation at CES 2019. Matrix design of a five-seater converter with a hybrid power plant based on the gas turbine engine of the French company Safran is provided.

Bell changed the concept and presented at CES 2020 a promising Nexus 4EX tiltrotor with four fans - reducing the number of rotors will help aircraft equipment be more energy efficient. In addition, the tiltrotor will now be electric, as long-distance flight is not so critical in urban conditions. However, Bell also developed a hybrid powerplant version.


 Nexus 4EX convertiplane layout

Nexus 4EX will be four- or five-seater and will be able to fly at a distance of up to 97 kilometers (52 nautical miles), and the hybrid version will be able to cover about 240 kilometers. A tiltrotor will be able to provide speeds of up to 241 kilometers per hour (130 knots), and the maximum take-off weight of the aircraft will be 3200 kilograms.

Bell suggests that flying in the air will last about two thousand hours a year, and the distance between cities averages from 24 to 40 kilometers. In the Nexus 4EX it is planned to make about 15 days than modern helicopters.

Initially, the Nexus 4EX is designed as a manned tiltrotor, but in the future, Bell will also develop an unmanned version, although on board it will still be in a pilot state.

Another urban aircraft was introduced at CES 2020 - the Hyundai S-A1, developed as part of the Uber Elevate program. The summer device will be able to reach speeds of up to 290 kilometers.

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