Skycar Update: China is going to beat us to the future

I received a note the other night that disturbed me greatly from one of the people in this world that I truly admire. I won’t reveal the details of that note since it contains personal information. But the gist of the correspondence is that it appears that China is on the verge of investing over a billion dollars in Skycar technology’s Rotapower engine to begin the process of development of that engine which makes the Skycar possible. To understand what Skycars are, click here to review my article on them.

I have been seeking to pull together all the interested parties to get the United States into the game going as far as contacting President Obama, and General Motors after the bail-out, to help us rediscover ourselves. But there was no response from Obama or General Motors. They aren’t interested in new technology, only the old.

So China is getting ready to usher in this technology for all the reasons that you’ll hear in the below broadcast of Doc Thompson as Doc discusses how the EPA shut down oil drilling in Alaska. We are our own worst enemy in the United States because too many special interests are getting in the way of development of new technology.

I have been speaking to this company Mollar International for well over 15 years, and what prompted my recent discussion with them was the need of an accurate launch period for their technology so I could do what I could to bring everyone together in America. But as was explained to me in the undisclosed letter, most of the investors in Mollar International, and Freedom Motors, are foreign investors, even though the inventor is as American as there is in our modern age. So as he explained, it’s not his first choice, but it is out of necessity. He has to go where the money is, and the desire to produce his product will take him, and right now it’s China.

Below I will disclose the non-confidential portions of my correspondence with Mollar International so the reader can see what is coming in the near future. Unfortunately because the United States is over-regulated and drags it’s feet in too many ways, it will be China that will be first.

First the letter from me to Bruce, then the response from Bruce.

Hi Bruce,

I was wondering how close your company is to a working model that could perform as a shuttle service beginning with a line running from West Chester, Ohio to Columbus.

Once Skycar performed the shuttle service for key people of this region and gained media, and political support, it would become viable for an amusement park such as Kings Island to offer a transport to Cedar Point. Both amusement parks are owned by Cedar Fair Amusements and would benefit by offering pass holders an economic way to visit both parks within the same day with their Platinum season pass offerings. The two parks are about 300 miles apart and they have a platinum package that allows season pass holders to visit those two parks for free. So a Skycar shuttle would be a great asset to their business model, and a great way to introduce the technology to the public at large and establish trust in the vehicles. Those two amusement parks are two of the largest and most spectacular in the country. A successful implementation of this type of shuttle service would then convince the Disney Parks in Florida to offer a similar shuttle service from their parks in central Florida to their cruise line in Port Canaveral.

This is something I have been considering for a while, but I believe all the above is very possible. I suppose the big question would be as to whether or not your Skycar is technically able to perform the task as of now, and if not, is there a time line that is reasonable so that I could begin to pitch this concept to the interested parties.

I’d be interested in knowing more details if you could provide them.

Thanks,

Rich

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Dear Rich,
As you know the Moller M400 Skycar is in development, and the working prototype of the M400X has successfully completed its initial hover tests. Unfortunately we are still having difficulties raising the required capital to move forward with our announced plans, therefore our present business plan calls for production of 1,000 of the M200G Neuera over the next 3+ years (2011 through 2014). We can produce this vehicle at much lower cost because of the very limited regulatory oversight that a vehicle of this type appears to require (it is a “ground effect” aircraft and therefore exempt from the traditional certification process and may not require a pilots license to operate).

The interest shown to date in this vehicle suggests that the early production models could be sold at a premium price. It is proposed that the first 40 units of the M200G be sold by auction. If a buyer indicates an interest in acquiring a M200G he will be put on a list of potential buyers. When that list totals some yet-to-be-specified number, the auction will begin. While this will require our resources to focus on the M200-series products for the next couple of years, it should enable us to raise sufficient funds to regain momentum on the M400 Skycar thereafter.

The next phase of the M400 testing will be to extend the hover flight characteristics with manned and untethered flights. We have prepared the M400X for the new, more powerful Rotapower engines required for this phase, and are working to integrate these engines with updated electronics being made for the M200 that make up the artificial stability system. When we get to the next set of tests with the M400 we will endeavor to safely demonstrate the new features with a set of piloted test flights defined by the FAA for an Experimental Aircraft.

After the completion of these tests, will hope to build up to three M400 pre-production aircraft that will incorporate changes to the fuselage and cabin and prepare us for high-speed, and mid-air VTOL to high-speed cruise transition maneuvers. It is our intent to test the full-scale preproduction Skycar in a wind tunnel to validate the transition characteristics prior to performing this transition in flight, but high-speed flight tests may be performed that originate with the nacelles (engine pods) in the horizontal position rather than their VTOL-mode orientation of 45 degrees of rotation. These tests will require that the Skycar use a conventional runway for take off and landing and will be required only for these tests. The Skycar’s VTOL mode take off and landing capabilities will continue to be demonstrated during other low-speed test flights. The earliest we anticipate an FAA certified production Skycar is now 2013, and due to the many milestones yet to be achieved it is very difficult to set an actual schedule of availability.

Regards,

Bruce Calkins
General Manager
Moller International
www.moller.com

 

Skycar is a very exciting technology. Unfortunately for the United States, Wilber and Orville Wright wouldn’t be able to fly a plane in Kitty Hawk, and Edison probably couldn’t develop a light bulb today, because the EPA would worry about the displacement of sand on a beach from where the plane lands or the elements of a bulb would be considered dangerous for the environment. So we are our own worst enemy.

I will always feel pride to know that the United States still produces people like Paul Mollar who invented the Skycar, but it will be the Chinese that will most likely take the bold first step.

Rich Hoffman

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