The Vertical Flight Society (VFS) recently announced the winners of the 39th Annual Student Design Competition, where entrants attempted to design accesable eVTOL aircraft.
The Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute took first place in the Graduate category with an “Oliwhoper” eVTOL aircraft, and the University of Maryland won the first prize in the Undergraduate category by adopting a “Blitzen” concept that was inspired by the German word “Blitz” (“lightning”).
Both of the aircraft this time are designed to cater to the needs of a broad spectrum of travelers including those with disabilities, as the 2021-2022 Student Design Competition was entitled “eVTOL Air Taxi for Passengers with Reduced Mobility (PRM).”
During the Bell-sponsored competition, each team was required to design a vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) aircraft that meets the specified air taxi mission to accommodate at least two passengers with disabilities.
The event, which has received a total of 14 proposals from around the world, aimed to promote the interest of engineering students in VTOL engineering and technology.
The new 2022-2023 RFP for the 40th Annual Student Design Competition, sponsored by Sikorsky, is entitled “High-Speed Vertical Takeoff and Landing (HSVTOL) Aircraft.” Students will need to design air vehicle concepts that incorporate technologies and design features enabling threat avoidance to meet critical military needs in highly contested environments.
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