On 30 March, e-Volo’s Volocopter VC200 entered a new phase. The rotorcraft carried out its first manned flight, with none other than the Chairman and CEO of the start-up on board. For three minutes, Alexander Zosel was able to verify the manoeuvrability of the electric multi-rotor in the air by doing several laps around an airfield at Karlsruhe, southern Germany.
The flight also tested two functions of the VC200: hovering in automatic mode, without touching the joystick, and an autonomous landing. After pressing just one button, the aircraft lands itself - gently.
When it enters service, the nine-battery powered multi-rotor will have a flight-autonomy of 30 to 45 minutes and a maximum speed of 60 mph (100 km/h). Its designers are targetting the leisure market and taxi-flight services to airports.
Certification and introduction onto the market have been postponed to 2018, with marketing of the ecological, emissions-free, multi-rotor helicopter due to begin this year, at the bargain price of 250,000 euros for the two-seater.