JetPack Aviation, developer of a ‘flying motorcycle’ aimed at both recreation and national security applications, has announced that it has now completed flight tests on the second generation of its prototype aircraft.
JetPack Aviation is most famous for the development of its jetpacks, which have also gained interest from the U.S Department of Defense. In 2019, the company received significant funding in excess of $2 million for the development of its prototype single-seater ‘Speeder’ aircraft, featured above.
The Speeder, a ‘flying motorcycle’, will be jet-powered, potentially be able to reach ranges of 1,000 nautical miles and speeds up to 400 mph. Several versions of the aircraft will be made, including both autonomous cargo versions and pilot-carrying versions.
Since receiving funding, JetPack Aviation has been continuing with prototype testing and development as intended. Earlier, a bare-bones version of the prototype called the P1 was created, only completing tethered flight tests. Now, a second generation of the prototype called the P1.5 is being tested, with intentions of flying off-tether in the near future. The company says that within a few months, if untethered flight tests of the P1.5 are completed successfully, the team will move on to create a ‘P2’ prototype that will more closely resemble the final version of the aircraft. The P2 prototype will be intended to complete manned tests as well as high-speed flight tests.
In addition to defense and potentially recreational applications, investors expect the speeder to also be useful in emergency rescue situations, high-speed organ transportation, fire fighting response, disaster relief, and more.
Why it’s important: JetPack Aviation has a proven history of success with the development of its well-known jetpacks. So far the company has followed through with its development commitments, continuing to iteratively create multiple prototypes of the Speeder. With its jet-powered capabilities for high-speed and long range flight, JetPack’s Speeder is likely to find customers in multiple industries as it approaches production.