Stunning design for vertical launch plane looks like something straight out of science fiction

Contributed by
Sep 4, 2015, 7:50 PM EDT (Updated)

We’ve been flying airplanes for more than 100 years, and we’re still waiting for something like the retro future of our dreams. Well, the aviation firm XTI hopes to change that.

Though it’s just a concept at this point, the company has proposed a concept vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) plane dubbed the TriFan 600, which utilizes tilt-rotor engines. Put simply: The tilt-rotor engines function in a similar capacity to a helicopter and allow the plane to take off vertically, then turn and fly at high speeds like an airplane. The proposed model would be a five-passenger craft with a maximum speed of 400 mph and a cruising altitude of 30,000 feet.

According to Popular Science, three ducted fans will lift the airplane in approximately 90 seconds, and two of those fans tilt from parallel to perpendicular, propelling the plane forward in the air. The report notes a sliding door covers the third fan, to prevent it from interfering with the aerodynamics during flight.

The concept might be awesome, but sadly, XTI doesn’t actually have the money to build this thing. The company is currently raising money through an “equity crowdfunding platform,” though it’s admittedly a long shot they’ll actually be able to pull it off. Regardless, this thing is absolutely beautiful. Just. Wow.

(Via Popular Science)

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