SYLLABUS SECTION: GS III (SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY)
WHY IN THE NEWS?
The government of India is exploring the possibility of inviting manufacturers of Electric Vertical Take-off and Landing (eVTOL) aircraft to set up bases in India.
What is eVTOL?
- An electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft is one that uses electric power to hover, take off, and land vertically.
- It uses distributed electric propulsion technology which means integrating a complex propulsion system with the airframe.
- There are multiple motors for various functions; to increase efficiency, and to also ensure safety.
- This technology has grown on account of successes in electric propulsion base on progress in motor, battery, fuel cell, and electronic controller technologies and is also fuel by the need for new vehicle technology that ensures urban air mobility (UAM).
- Thus, eVTOL is one of the newer technologies and developments in the aerospace industry.
Kinds of eVTOLs:
- Vectored Thrust: where any thruster is use for lift and cruise.
- Hover Bikes/Personal Flying Device: are single¬ person eVTOL aircraft and in multicopter-type wingless configurations
- Lift and Cruise: where independent thrusters are use for cruise and lift without any thrust vectoring;
- Wingless (Multicopter): where there is no thruster for a cruise but only for lift; and
- Electric Rotorcraft: It uses a rotor, such as an electric helicopter or autogyro
- The global market for eVTOLs was put at $8.5 million in 2021.
- It is expected to grow to $30.8 million by 2030.
- The demand will be on account of green energy and noisefree aircraft, cargo-carrying concepts, and the need for new modes of transport
Challenges Associated with eVTOL :
- Ensuring safety in case of powerplant or rotor failure.
- Aircraft protection from cyberattacks
- Navigation and flight safety and the use of technology when operating in difficult terrain, unsafe operating environments, and bad weather.
- EVTOL certifications are also complex because of planned operations within urban areas, new battery systems, and the need for higher levels of automated
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Source: The Hindu