Mayman Aerospace, developer of an optionally-piloted, single-seat, high-powered VTOL utility aircraft, recently unveiled a prototype of its ‘Speeder’ at the 2022 Draper Venture Network CEO Summit in Northern California.
Above: A flight-ready prototype of the speeder was recently showcased at the 2022 Draper Venture Network CEO Summit in Northern California
The Speeder by Mayman Aerospace is features eight small jet engines, which will allow it to travel in unpiloted cargo mode for over 400 miles per flight at speeds over 500 mph, all while carrying up to 1000lbs of cargo. While the Speeder will be able to carry a pilot situated similarly as on a motorcycle, the unpiloted version’s high speed, range, and payload capacities will make it a highly useful tool in applications such as emergency response, firefighting, rapid cargo logistics, military operations, and much more.
At the Draper Venture Summit taking place in June of 2022, attendees of the networking event had the chance to view the details and design of the prototype aircraft as well as sit in the pilot’s position to get a sense of what this new vehicle will be like to fly.
Said Tim Draper, a primary investor in the Mayman, “The Speeder AUV is a total game changer. It is one of the most exciting, industry disrupting technologies we’ve seen and we were thrilled to provide this platform for its first public unveiling. We believe Speeder is the future of VTOL flight and I’m personally looking forward to flying one myself.”
Above: View from the open-air cockpit of the Mayman Aerospace Speeder prototype
In particular, the Speeder’s ability to fly in situations that would ground a helicopter, drone, or airplane, all while flying with extremely high payloads for long periods of time, has encouraged many organization to seek business with Mayman. According to a recent press release, the company is already in advanced conversations with potential customers in in national defense, critical cargo, wildland firefighting (coordinated swarmed support for air tankers) and disaster relief (delivery of medical supplies, water, generators, and medevac).
Mayman Aerospace is a new brand created by micro-jet engine expert Jetpack Aviation, which has been creating jetpack-related products for over ten years with great success. According to CEO David Mayman, the new brand was created to separate the company’s consumer markets from its commercial markets. This move will allow Mayman Aerospace to create a uniquely competitive and flexible product for customers in many industries, especially for customers interested in the cargo autonomous and remotely-piloted cargo versions of the aircraft.
Above: Rendering of a Mayman Aerospace speeder fighting a wind turbine fire.
Above: A cargo version of the Speeder will carry supplies between remote destinations
Why it’s important: While the Mayman Aerospace Speeder is not electrically powered, its VTOL capabilities in range, payload, and flight time far surpass options in development from many leading cargo eVTOL companies. While eVTOLs will be a low-impact option in cases of flights between consistent locations, the Mayman Speeder will be a far more capable option in higher-need situations like wildfires, emergency rescue, and rapid-cargo needs in difficult situations and terrain, where required flight times and capabilities will be high and unknown prior to missions. As Mayman Aerospace continues to make progress, industry stakeholders can begin to note in which situations and industries VTOL or electric VTOL aircraft will be more suitable.