In addition to announcing a new aircraft design and $830 million in new investment as part of a deal to go public, Lilium released numerous videos on the company’s YouTube channel exploring various aspects of its design, manufacturing, and go-to-market strategies.
Daniel Wiegand, CEO and co-founder — along with chief engineer and co-founder Matthias Meiner, deputy chief technology officer Brian Phillipson, and chief technical officer Alastair McIntosh — walked viewers through many aspects of the new seven-seat Lilium Jet’s design and engineering in one 15-minute video, explaining that the company has made significant progress in its use of ducted electric vectored thrust to power and control the aircraft.
“Every airplane design starts with the propulsion system,” Wiegand said. “The unique thing about our technology is that we have mastered the use of electric ducted fans, and these come with a set of advantages. The first advantage is that you can put acoustic liners into the duct, similar to the engines in large airliners, and these acoustic liners capture and dissipate the noise before it propagates into the environment. This allows us to achieve market-leading low-noise levels.”
“The second advantage is that such a ducted fan is roughly 15 times smaller to lift the same weight [than] an open propeller system,” he continued. “This means the footprint of such a configuration is smaller for the same weight. We can make heavier airplanes that can carry more passengers and this gives us the unit economics that we need for our service.”
Lilium started developing its seven-seat aircraft two years ago, according to Wiegand, which it plans to bring to market by 2024.