The Flying Car of Madrid: For 2 People, Fuel Ammonia and will Arrive in 2023

This Autonomous vehicle will work by taking advantage of the hydrogen in ammonia and promises to achieve an autonomy never seen before thanks to its aerodynamic model.

Electric mobility powered by hydrogen has become one of the most important areas of study and development of the time. Scientists from around the globe, including some teams in Spain, are looking for a way to use this cheap gas as an inexhaustible source for the production of electricity and thus revolutionize world transport.

Along these lines, the Ventor Innovations company, based in Moralzarzal (Madrid), has been working for a few months with really promising results. “We believe that there is going to be a lot of talk about hydrogen in the coming months,” says Emilio Martín, CEO of Ventor, to EL ESPAÑOL-Omicron, who recently presented his line of autonomous and electric flying vehicles.

The basic approach is to generate electricity from hydrogen with a low-temperature fuel cell. Something that is not a great novelty since there are even streetcars that use this scheme and ‘gas stations’ in Spain that provide hydrogen. The real revolution is that they manage to extract hydrogen in situ. “We use ammonia to obtain hydrogen inside the aircraft with a cleavage reactor,” he says.

The difference is substantial: while hydrogen fuel cell vehicles need to charge and store this molecule at very high pressure, Ventor uses ammonia tanks. A compound much less delicate to handle and whose availability is widely guaranteed. With this premise, Ventor is currently immersed in the development of a family of electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) flying vehicles commercially known as ZeroeVTOL.

Madrid flying car

We think that it is going to be a very important development vector“, indicates Emilio Martín. With this system, they aim to obtain an “energy density 10 times greater than that achieved right now with lithium batteries. ” Translated into the real world, in the same space that a lithium battery occupies that gives 1 hour of autonomy to an aircraft, with the Ventor system and occupying that same space, up to 10 hours would be achieved.

If finally achieved, it would be a true turning point for air mobility, whose main problem has always been related to the low energy density of lithium batteries, which due to their high weight and low performance impeded the development of large aircraft.

The second great innovation of the Moralzarzal flying car is its flap system. These moving surfaces allow aircraft to take off and land at lower speeds by increasing the wing area. Allowing a stable flight in such complex maneuvers. Vendors’ design involves attaching the engines to the flaps so that they move jointly.

“For example, in take-off mode, the flaps are deployed and the 4 engines will have a vertical position. In this configuration the car would fly like a drone”, points out Emilio Martín. Referring to the fact that it will be able to take off completely in the vertical and maneuver from one side to the other, always with a very limited speed over the surface.

After reaching a certain height, the flap system retracts and with it, the engines are positioned horizontally, until they reach a conventional plane layout. In this way, the transition between vertical flight mode – for takeoffs and landings – and horizontal flight mode is really fine. Lift is never lost thanks to this simultaneous movement of the flap surface and the engine.

“As soon as the flaps are fully retracted and the engines are in a horizontal position, the flying car is piloted like a fixed-wing airplane with ailerons and depth actuators,” says Emilio Martín. This also manages to significantly increase autonomy by providing an aerodynamic profile typical of an aircraft with gliding capabilities, unlike a drone.

Venton Innovations’ approach is to equip its flying cars with pairs of propeller motors to obtain the perfect balance in descending and ascending maneuvers. But Emilio Martín points out that, according to his calculations, the front engines will be turned off during conventional flight to save ammonia.

“This is the first time that it has been possible to merge the concept of a multirotor [that of current drones with several engines] and that of a fixed-wing aircraft,” he continues. “It’s something global. ” Vendor has a patent for this “propeller flap”.

The combination of multiplying the autonomy by 10 by using hydrogen from ammonia and by 2 thanks to the aerodynamics makes the Ventor scheme achieve 20 times more range than an equivalent vehicle with a lithium battery.


Vendor Innovations has a first development prototype of the entire ZereVTOL family called V-Proton. This technological approach to what in the future will be one of the most advanced air mobility methods takes a few months of development within the company’s laboratories and the plans are to use lithium batteries at first.

“This first demonstrator is designed to fly with a very small payload, like a video camera, for surveillance missions .” Equivalent to the V-Raptor in applications only with the possibility of taking off and landing vertically.

“From now on, we intend to scale 3 levels: V-Proton +, V-Pelican and Altacab “, he points out. The V-Pelican and Altacab will be the first to incorporate the complete ammonia system, the latter being the flying car with which the company wants to conquer the Madrid skies.

“This roadmap is so that the development and certification process can be accelerated. Each one is the demonstrator of the next stage .” A very complex industrial process that they will have to carry out in the coming years.

To do this, Ventor Innovations has partnered with two other Spanish companies to develop the technology of the ammonia dissociation reactor, which is responsible for separating nitrogen and hydrogen molecules to power the engines.


Starting with the V-Proton +, the smallest hydrogen aircraft, Emilio Martín aims for a maximum take-off mass of 25 kilograms and a payload capacity of 5 kilograms. “It’s a very direct scaling of the normal V-Proton, about 50 centimeters on each side more.” The cargo hold, located in the belly of the aircraft, is oriented to space surveillance sensors or communication systems. “Also for point-to-point logistics transport.”

For its part, the V-Pelican will have 200 kilograms of total takeoff mass with 100 kilograms of payload and will incorporate a total of 8 engines. In this case, the approach is that it serves as a logistics platform for the transport of parcels and, not least, as a demonstrator of the Altacab, the electric car. Both for the V-Proton + with the V-Pelican they hope to have test units from mid-2022.

Altacab will be the jewel in the crown of the Moralzarzal company with an autonomous air vehicle with space to transport 2 people. If plans go as planned, they plan to install a total of 12 ammonia-powered propeller motors. The load capacity of this vehicle amounts to about 180 kilograms and they estimate that they will have the first demonstrator – in the absence of certification – by the end of 2023.

Post a Comment