Unmanned hybrid-electric aircraft combining helicopter and rugged bush plane unveiled for cargo delivery

Feb. 3, 2022
The promise of the Chaparral is fast deployment in rough terrain, which has interest from military logistics experts and humanitarian customers.

SOUTH SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. – Elroy Air, a startup in San Francisco, Calif., that seeks to make cargo deliveries using autonomous hybrid-electric aircraft, has unveiled its pre-production craft: the Chapparral. The Verge reports. Continue reading original article

The Military & Aerospace Electronics take:

3 Feb. 2022 -- Described by Elroy Air’s co-founder Clint Cope as “a hybrid between a rough-and-ready helicopter and a battle-hardened bush plane,” the Chaparral is an unmanned vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) craft that switches between hovering using eight vertical fans and forward flight using four swiveling propellers.

A hybrid-electric powertrain gives it a range of as far as 300 miles and a cargo capacity of 300 to 500 pounds. Users load goods into an underslung pod that can be picked up and dropped off autonomously.

“The Chaparral will be a vital logistics link for people around the world with unreliable roadways and in remote and rural areas that take longer to reach today,” Cope says.

Related: USAF taps LiquidPiston to overcome battery shortcomings in eVTOL and UAS propulsion

Related: Honeywell forms unit dedicated to UAS and UAM

Related: Pipistrel begins to accept orders for Nuuva V300 autonomous eVTOL cargo UAV

John Keller, chief editor
Military & Aerospace Electronics

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