Transcend Air Taps Kaman To Make High-speed VTOL

 - August 13, 2021, 12:46 PM
Kaman has been tapped to manufacture Transcend Air's five-passenger turbine-powered Vy 400 at its plant in Florida to support efforts to bring the tiltwing to market by 2025. (Photo: Transcend Air)

Transcend Air announced on August 13 that it has selected Kaman Aerospace Group to build its planned Vy 400 tiltwing, which is slated to enter service by 2025. Helicopter manufacturer Kaman will make the turbine-powered VTOL at its facility in Jacksonville, Florida.

The $3.5 million Vy 400 is expected to have a range of up to 450 miles and cruise speeds in excess of 400 mph. Transcend Air envisions the aircraft being used for regional passenger services, such as connecting Manhattan and the center of Boston in 36 minutes. Huslig Collective has been contracted to develop designs for a luxury interior option for a Vy 400R “Reserved Edition” model for executive/VIP transportation.

Transcend intends to certify the Vy 400 by 2025 with a propulsion system based on a 2,500-shp GE Aviation CT7-8 turboprop engine. It said the five-passenger, piloted aircraft will deliver per-mile direct operating costs that are one-quarter of those for medium twin helicopters with comparable cabin volumes and payloads.

During the course of this year, the Boston-based company has been using a mix of simulation, analysis tools, and truck-based ground tests to refine the Vy 400’s flight control laws, handling qualities, and various systems details. It has not said when it expects to build the first full-scale prototype and commence flight testing.

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