The CityAirbus urban taxi programme, which is being developed by Airbus’ E-Aircraft Systems unit, has achieved completion and Power On of the “iron bird” ground test rig.
Airbus reports the completion and Power On of the “iron bird” ground test rig for its CityAirbus urban taxi programme. The facility, located in Taufkirchen, Germany, will be used to verify the entire electric propulsion system of the vehicle, which is being developed by Airbus’ E-Aircraft Systems unit.
CityAirbus is a four-passenger, self-piloted battery-powered vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) vehicle designed to provide urban air mobility in an affordable and environmentally friendly way.
The first full electric propulsion test bench has the capability to operate the propulsion system chain from flight controls to the dynamic loads of the propellers. This allows verification of the electric, mechanical and thermal dynamics. After being matured and verified on the iron bird, the propulsion system will be embedded on the demonstrator vehicle by mid-2018.
The test bench configuration reflects the CityAirbus architecture including motors, power electronics and distribution boxes developed and produced by Siemens under the cooperation agreement between Airbus and Siemens on electric propulsion. The two companies are also working together on the E-Fan X project.
Meanwhile, the development of the CityAirbus demonstrator itself is on-going. The first structural parts have been produced and will be assembled soon. First flight is due to take place before the end of 2018.