Swiss startup, Sirius Aviation, has unveiled the Sirius Jet, its design for hydrogen powered electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft. Dubbed “flying cars“, “flying taxis” or “air taxis” when the concept first appeared, eVTOLs are believed to revolutionise mobility, especially intra-city. While some of the first eVTOLs to be used commercially are supposed to be deployed in Paris for this year’s Olympics, hydrogen-powered versions are only starting to emerge.
The Sirius Jet is a “high-performance, zero-emission VTOL aircraft, propelled by a hydrogen-electric ducted fan propulsion system “, Sirius Aviation explains in a statement. “Leveraging jet aerodynamics with airplane and helicopter versatility, it achieves extended flight distances, impressive speeds, and high altitudes at near-silent levels.”
Sirius Aviation plans to launch the jet already next year in two options – Sirius Business Jet, tailored to private jet needs, and Sirius Millennium Jet, crafted for commercial aviation. While Sirius Aviation calls its jets the world’s first hydrogen eVTOL aircraft, Australian startup AMSL Aero already beat them to that claim, unveiling in November last year Vertiia, their own hydrogen-powered eVTOL. However, AMSL’s aircraft is only foreseen to become commercially available in 2026, one year after Sirius’.
Developed in collaboration with BMW’s Designworks and Sauber Group, the two jets will have different specifications, tailored to their purpose. The Sirius Business Jet will accommodate up to 3 passengers and have a 1,150-mile (1,850 km) flight range, cruise speed of 323 mph (530 km/h), altitude capability of 30,000 feet (9 km) and “ultra-quiet noise levels” of 60dBa. Most of the characteristics of the Sirius Millenium Jet are similar to the Business version, but it has a capacity of up to 5 passengers and a shorter range of just 650 miles (1,046 km).
The Sirius jets are also equipped with an airframe parachute system, effectively reducing the incident risk to virtually zero, according to the startup. “This feature also significantly enhances passenger psychological comfort, especially for those apprehensive about flying, akin to Muhammad Ali who famously flew with his own parachute. We recognize the concern for passenger psychological comfort in small planes and have addressed it with this solution”, Sirius says on its website.