- Lilium Jet, developed by Lilium GmbH, is an eVTOL (electric vertical take-off and landing) air taxi that aims to revolutionize urban transportation by providing emission-free, efficient, and low-noise flights, enabling passengers to avoid congested traffic in urban areas.
- The jet features aerodynamic efficiency, low noise, customizable configurations (4-seater and 6-seater), and advanced technology like ducted electric vectored thrust for precise control.
- Lilium's cost-effectiveness, shorter journey times, and its achievement of dual certifications from EASA and FAA have garnered investor trust and international contracts with countries like China, Switzerland, and Italy, making it a competitive player in the aerospace industry.
Have you ever been to Imagica? It is one of the most famous theme parks in India. Amongst all the scary, adventurous rides, there is one which is a replication of the experience on a roller coaster - virtually! And has an extended analogy to a very famous Bollywood movie.
Mr. India (1987). The hero and heroine of the movie - Sridevi and Anil Kapoor, go on a very thrilling ride in their FLYING CAR to save their kids who were kidnapped by Mogambo. During their mission of rescuing kids, that flying car faces hurdles thereby giving us jerks physically while we watch the film in a similarly designed taxi car.
Now picture this, a flying car taking you to places that in general would take hours to reach. Yes, flying cars are straight out jumping from, “The Jetsons”, “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles”, “The Transformers”, and “Mr. India” and popping out to reality! As we say, that we are progressing into this world of Electric Vehicles and implying the applications of sustainability, I think it’s safe to say “Sabra ka fal meetha hota hai” (the fruit of patience is sweet).
When I say flying cars, I don't mean flights but air taxis. The industry of Aerospace is expanding so much that the day is not far from when we book Uber air taxis instead of Uber taxis. Not to forget that it's an eVTOL (electric vertical take-off and landing) Vehicle; known as Lilium Jet.
What is Lilium Jet?
It was designed by Lilium GmbH and was founded in 2015 by four engineers and Ph.D. students at the Technical University of Munich. Daniel Wiegand, Sebastian Born, Matthias Meiner, and Patrick Nathen. Their startup idea while they were college kids, just like any of us, finally came true from cafes to million-dollar companies.
This squad has expanded their company to 800+ employees who belong to 56+ various nationalities and successfully built 4 offices globally. According to Crunchbase, Lilium has raised a total of $1B in funding over 8 rounds. Their latest funding was raised on May 2, 2023, from a post-IPO equity round. It is funded by 20 investors. Aceville and Lightrock are the most recent investors. It has also made 2 investments. Their most recent investment was on Feb 8, 2023, when Ionblox raised $32M.
But hey, what was all this funding about? What does Lilium Jet promise to offer? As with any other science working projects that we did in high school, even lithium has its own smaller versions and prototypes for testing. (Source: Lilium Jet )
1 yr old - Their journey started in 2015 with the first half-scale demonstrator - Falcon.
3 yr old - 2 2-seater unmanned prototype in 2017 in Germany.
5 yr old - 5 Sear Unmanned first flight in May 2019.
5.5 yr old - After 100 flights, a 5-seater (vertical, horizontal, and 25-degree banked turns) took flight in October 2019.
6 yr old - First Prototype failed due to a fire during maintenance in February. 2020
8 yr old - Abandoned Prototype in 2022.
9 yr old -Successful test in 2022 and received dual certifications in 2023.
Well, that's not it! All of these trials have finally brought up the actual model - a Lilium jet that fulfills its purpose of hopping from skyscraper to skyscraper and ignoring the crowded traffic of urban areas. But I think it's time to understand its technical features so that you, my reader could have a better knowledge of it other than merely a flying car!
Let's imagine, that there's a pizza place in your town and it has released its sequel which has all the fantastic ingredients from the original pizza and is made even better. (Source: Lilium Jet )
Fresher Toppings: Zero Operating Emissions
It has no harmful emissions that would harm nature, thereby bringing sustainability to Mother Earth.
Enhanced Dough: Aerodynamic Efficiency and Low Noise
It helps the jet to move smoothly across the sky, just like a free bird which would indirectly ensure faster flow with very little consumption of energy. Since the jet is eVTOL - the noise output is quite low which is also suitable for nature.
Exciting New Flavors: Market-leading Payload
In simpler words, it's like having a backpack that can hold more things than your friends' backpacks. In this case, proving the definition of taxi means passengers and their stuff too.
Improved Cheese Blend: Ducted Electric Vectored Thrust
It has special technology but sticks to basics with the intent of controlling the movement. Just like having a remote-controlled toy that can move in different directions. To make the vehicle fly or move in a very controlled and precise way.
Customizable Options: Single “stage” rotor/ stator
A single "Stage" Rotor/Stator means it has a special part that helps it work better in multiple ways. It is the element that makes the jet fly faster, also making it more reliable and easy to maintain.
Bigger Size: 4-seat and 6-seat configurations
The jet has a spacious interior with multiple people configuration and currently has 2 models of 4 seaters and 6 seaters each.
After all these features, it is evident to ask a very important question i.e. is it cost-effective?? And the answer is Yes!!!
According to the information on their Site - the following data can be inferred:
Now, that we know that this air taxi or should I say flying car checks off all the demands of a passenger, the investors of the company have had the same faith and trust in the team as well. These 800 people have managed to achieve so many certifications and milestones in such a short period of time, that it has become one of the most competitive companies in the aerospace industry.
It is no secret that Lilium has signed contracts with China, Switzerland, and Italy to deliver these jets and finally revolutionize the skies. What makes them more credible is their dual certification achievement from EASA (European Union Aviation Safety Agency) and FAA (Federal Aviation Administration). We all know, it's no joke, right? (Source: Lilium Jet )
Honestly, I can't wait to experience this where the traffic of metropolitan cities is finally beaten! Once you start flying, there’s definitely no stopping!
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Edited by Shruti Thapa