dittybopper: From the first possibility of building a helicopter, until the first really practical example, was 30 years (1906 to 1936).Moller has has been working on his vaporware aircraft for about 40 years now.
way south: dittybopper: From the first possibility of building a helicopter, until the first really practical example, was 30 years (1906 to 1936).Moller has has been working on his vaporware aircraft for about 40 years now.It depends on how you count development time.Moller wasn't idle the whole time. He has built multiple vehicles that show evolutionary progress. His first attempts could barely float and his latest are hovering outside of ground effect (Not unlike what is seen in the Airmule videos).I agree that He's not a very good businessman, but the goals seem within reach.Engines powerful enough for helicopters didn't appear until the 1930's, which is roughly when the first rotorcraft hit the scene. They weren't commercially viable for decades, but they had been proven on the battlefield.A closer comparison would probably be the tilt rotor (transitional flight, dependence on computers), which began development in the 50's (not counting the German prototypes) and spawned the Osprey. That program ran for thirty odd years and consumed many billions of dollars before being deployed to combat. With the BA-609 still in development, it can be said that tilt rotor technology hasn't come to the masses after a half century of trying.Beyond the helicopter there are no commercially successful powered lift vehicles. The only other military examples I can think of are the Harrier and F-35. Neither of which are real winners if we want to talk about their start in life.Building roadable aircraft (which have been around and flying since before WW2) is a different challenge to sustaining flight on a column of air.
The A.I.S.B.: We will never have widely available flying cars, at least not for general transportation or commuting use. We have more than enough problems with crashes in our 2 dimensions, we don't need another one.
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