NASA propulsion technology brings 'flying cars' closer to reality

01 Jan, 2024
Image: Epiphany Transporter

Anyone who's seen “Blade Runner” or “The Jetsons” knows that you can't have "The Future" without flying cars, but despite many people's hopes, these flying personal transports have always seemed to be one step ahead of the present. Now, one company is coming out to say that it has the key to making these fantastic fly machines a reality, and it has a NASA-proven propulsion system at its heart that makes it hard to dismiss as easily.

The company, Applied eVTOL Concepts, presented its plan for the Epiphany Transporter this week, a vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) vehicle that the company said is capable of a top speed of 258 kph but generates less than 55 decibels of noise at 15 meters up, which is somewhere between the volume of a steady rainfall (50 dB) and normal human conversation (60 dB).

The secret appears to be the ducted thrusters along the sides and rear of the Epiphany Transporter, which researchers at NASA’s Ames Research Center found in 2002 proved to produce a significant amount of thrust, the physical force that powers jet engines and helicopters. 

The craft is designed to seat two passengers and their luggage. The company says the Epiphany is about the size of a Tesla Model S, and that it could fit in your typical one-car garage. 


Image: Epiphany Transporter

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