Welcome to the future of civil air transport, recreated in LEGO! This is a model of the CityAirbus, an all-electric air taxi prototype with four twin-rotor pods, which is undergoing flight testing. A production version would carry up to 4 passengers around our towns and cities, flying between centres known as "vertiports".
Watch as the model aircraft takes off and hovers under its own power! A translucent lifting mechanism gives the appearance of flight.
Lift off the ground and recreate the early hovering tests. Then fly around! Once the skids have left the ground, the movement function allows the craft to move forwards and backwards as it hovers.
Stow the hovering equipment and then use the traditional method of flight for LEGO aircraft; pick it up and "swoosh" around the house. This looks forward to full flight testing and production.
The model recreates the four twin-rotor pods with each rotor of a pair turning in opposite directions.
The skids include small wheels to allow side-to-side movement on landing, for adjustment on the test ground or vertiport. The side panels are removable just as in the real aircraft.
The real aircraft measures 8m x 8m. The model scale is 1:20.
The model measures 40cm x 37cm x 15cm, rising to 22cm whilst hovering.
As an all-electric aircraft, this is a sustainable vehicle, powered by renewable energy. As a LEGO Ideas set it might include a booklet explaining different concepts of Vertical Take-Off and Landing aircraft and how future craft can use renewable energy.
Model Development Plan:
- The model works well in all three motorised functions and both passive functions.
- The lifting mechanism is geared down to suit the capability of the L-motor. It has a clutch to protect the motor. The gear ratios could be adjusted in the final model.
- The model may use a simple battery unit and L-motor of any electric system. For Powered-Up this is the 2-port hub and L-motor, similar to the power scheme of the Crocodile locomotive. For Power Functions it is either the AAA battery unit or the LiPo battery unit and the L-motor.
- The livery is as close to the real aircraft as bricks can achieve. In the final set, a few stickers could cover the linear actuators and add details, names and logos, by agreement with the IP owner.
I was motivated to build this model when set 42113 was cancelled. LEGO Technic needs good civil aircraft. I chose this model for the interesting rotor configuration and the feasibility of building it at a similar size. The first thing anyone wants a LEGO aircraft to do is take off, so I borrowed a mechanism from an aircraft loading platform and used the clear beams like Anakin's podracer to give the appearance of flight. The forward and backward movement function adds more play value, following the theme of testing the prototype. More pictures are available at https://brickshelf.com/cgi-bin/gallery.cgi?f=581047
The model is based on published IP from Airbus Helicopters. Pictures and videos of the real aircraft can be found on the Innovation section of their web site and by searching for "CityAirbus" on all good image and video sites.
If you would like a LEGO multicopter drone, or just a good LEGO Technic aircraft set, then this is the set for you! Please support the project and spread the word.