Get ready to move on from propeller-based propulsion.
Nearly every air taxi concept (and OGN has featured many in recent months) involves rapidly spinning propellers placed in strategic positions outside of the main fuselage of the aircraft - moving air fast enough to achieve thrust in the direction of propulsion.
However, a new air taxi concept from Jetoptera - a company in Seattle - breaks from the norm, reinventing flight with bladeless fans at incredible power levels.
Called the J-2000 concept, the new VTOL inter-city aircraft's design employs a new feature: Jeoptra's proprietary propulsion system called a "fluidic propulsion system" (FPS). It's similar to the bladeless fans that hit the mainstream from Dyson, wherein no spinning blades are used whatsoever.
However, much like Dyson, this VTOL aircraft's FPS does have spinning blades in its system. It takes in a comparatively small flow of compressed air, which is then used to suck in a much larger flow of ambient air at ludicrous speeds. Sir James Dyson himself explained how it works - employing a small, quiet impeller to amass pressure around an aerodynamically shaped loop, which eventually generates incredible speeds through a little slit curved around the ring of the FPS.
This system has several benefits, according to Jetoptera. It "improves propulsive efficiency by more than 10 percent while lowering fuel consumption by more than 50% compared to small turbojets" and "saves approximately 30% in weight compared to turbofans or turboprops and significantly reduces complexity." Furthermore, it's much quieter than a conventional propeller with an internal combustion engine.
So, Jetoptera could find itself closer to the lead when it comes to the technological edge for the next generation of inter-city flight. Watch this (air) space.