The FanWing has to be weirdest aircraft ever devised: it doesn’t use rotors or jets for propulsion, but a patented “distributed-propulsion vortex-lift” technology which is similar to the blade cylinders used in harvesting machines. In fact, that’s exactly what it looks like, a flying harvester. This prototype was presented at the recent Farnborough International Air Show, and seeing it flying in the video is weird, to say the least.
Despite the weirdness, it works. Not only that: this design allows for very steady flights and attack angles which are not possible in other aircraft without losing stability. The fan lets the aircraft to almost float in the air, with the capability of moving very slowly, resisting turbulence and winds with ease. The company claims that it also has a very low carbon footprint for “projected manned applications.” As the gallery shows, they are not stopping in UAVs: they want to do ultralight aircraft, planes for short-range delivery, fire fighters, crop dusting, short-haul passenger service and even a Vertical-Take-Off version.