Thursday, November 5, 2009


PALV: Personal Air & Land Vehicle

The PALV (Personal Air and Land Vehicle) is a concept for a flying car, which
utilizes autogyro flying technology. In fact, the PALV is a cross-breed be-
tween a car, a motorcycle and a gyrocopter, and is designed to eliminate limit-
ations in either flying or driving mode. The vehicle is under development by
the Dutch entrepreneur John Bakker in close cooperation with the Dutch
company Spark Design Engineering and other partners.

The design of the PALV is based on the three-wheeled road-going production vehicle
Carver One from the Dutch company Carver Europe. The Carver One has a fully
enclosed cabin with two seats placed behind one another. The rear wheels are
incorporated into one unit together with the engine and gearbox. The cabin is
attached to the rear unit by a mechanical-hydraulic system.
The Dynamic Vehicle Control (DVC) automatically tilts the cabin,
depending on the steering input, speed and acceleration of the
vehicle, much like a motorcycle. [URL=]

The same system and general cabin layout is used for the PALV. On the road,
the PALV can reach speeds of 200 kilometres per hour (125 mph).

For flying mode, the vehicle is fitted with a single foldable rotor on top of the cabin,
a single foldable push propeller at the rear of the cabin and a foldable tail-wing
section. By folding out the rotor blades, propeller and tail-wing section, the
PALV is able to take to the skies with autogyro flying technology.

Forward speed is produced by the rear propeller, which is driven by the same engine
that drives the wheels in road-mode. Within a takeoff run of just 50 metres (165 ft),
the PALV is lifted into the air by the foldable rotor on top of the cabin. This rotor
auto-rotates due to the forward speed and generates lift. Because of the slower
auto-rotation, as well as the absence of a tail rotor,
the PALV is much quieter than a helicopter.

The PALV is designed to fly under the 1,500 metre (4,000 ft) floor of commercial air space.
This makes it possible to take off at any time, without a flight plan, from the nearest airfield
or helipad. Much like a helicopter, the PALV has a Very Short Take Off and Vertical Landing
(VSTOVL) capability, enabling it to land almost vertically within a distance of just 5 metres
(16 ft). The autogyro technology furthermore enables a safe landing even when the engine
fails, as the vehicle descends vertically instead of nose-diving.

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