Aerotaxi Joby S4 crashed during tests: the device was accelerated to 435 km/h


Yesterday, February 17, the American company Joby Aviation published an official document, which reports on the crash of an early prototype of the all-electric Joby S4 aerotaxi. Company officials said the latest vehicle, which boasts vertical takeoff and landing, as well as five seats for passengers and a pilot, crashed during another round of tests. Fortunately, the control of the electric aircraft was carried out remotely from the ground base, so as a result of the disaster, no one was injured – the flight took place in an uninhabited area.

So far, representatives of the American company do not plan to publish a detailed analysis of the situation – first the incident will be investigated, and then Joby Aviation will publish a detailed report. On the other hand, company representatives reported that the accident occurred at a high speed – the Joby S4 vehicle was accelerated to 435 km/h. It is worth noting that this speed is more than 100 km/h higher than the maximum declared speed of electric aerotaxi. Accordingly, it is quite possible that the control or power systems simply could not withstand such a large load.

Initially, the developers said that the Joby S4 is the fastest representative in its class – the electric vehicle was announced with a cruising speed of 322 km/h, but the prototype was quickly accelerated to 330 km/h. After that, the representatives of the Joby Aviation company stated that in order to obtain a corresponding certificate for a flying vehicle of this design, it is necessary to provide the state regulator with information about tests during which the maximum declared speed must be successfully exceeded by 30%.

Most likely, it was precisely these tests that the developers of the American brand were engaged in – but, unfortunately, it is not possible to call the flight a success. On the other hand, Joby Aviation said that the first pre-production prototype of the aerotaxi, which had made several thousand flights without any complaints, had crashed. Now the engineers have to find out what caused the accident at such a high speed and eliminate the problem before sending the aircraft into full release.

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