MOLLER International, manufacturer of the M200X experimental two-seat vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) aircraft, aims to fly a four-seater, the M400 Skycar, before the end of 1995.

Moller is expected to give more details of plans for the Skycar at the Paris air show, which opened on 10 June.

The company is exhibiting a mock-up of the M200 configured to carry two occupants. The California-based concern hopes to begin limited M400 production in 1996 before receiving US Federal Aviation Administration certification, which is expected in 1997.

The M400 will be powered by eight 90kW (120shp) dual-rotor Moller built MR 530 HT engines mounted horizontally in ducts, rather than vertically in the M200X. The Wankel-type rotary engines have a thrust-to-weight ratio of 2.3:1 and only three major moving parts.

The round shape and small size of the engines allows them to be placed in the centre of the duct behind the fan hub where it directly drives the fan without a gearbox.

Thrust is deflected for VTOL operations, by dual vane assemblies in each nacelle. Four independent servo-motors, operate each thrust-deflection vane assembly.

The M400, which will use automobile fuel, has a projected maximum range of 1,450km (800nm) based on a fuel consumption of 6.3km/litre. Payload with maximum fuel will be 335kg, while maximum gross take-off weight is 1,090kg.

Source: Flight International