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Watch Lilium’s main wing transition flight test

German startup Lilium has released footage of its first main wing transition flight test with its Phoenix 2 eVTOL technology demonstrator.

“Successful main wing transition is a massive validation of our flight physics models and our overall technology approach,” Alastair McIntosh, chief technology officer at Lilium, told shareholders on June 7.

From a flight physics perspective, the company said completing transition means the airflow going over the flaps attaches and becomes smooth, allowing the lift to be generated by the wing rather than by the motors. The company completed the main wing transition flight at a speed of 70 knots (130 kilometers per hour or 80 miles per hour).

Lilium will continue its flight test campaign at the ATLAS Test Flight Center in Spain, with plans to expand its flight envelope to include transition of the forward canards and high-speed flights. Daniel Wiegand, CEO of Lilium, told shareholders that the company is expecting to achieve speeds of 100 knots (185 km/h or 115 mph) in the coming months.

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  1. Quite impressive. From a logistics and maintenance perspective, I’d be concerned about the (some) 36 mechanical devices on the 4 main wing mounting points, plus the mechanical aspects of those mounting surfaces (flaps?). How will freezing/icing and other non-fair weather conditions affect the operation? Is the intended maintenance to remove/replace each of the 36 units as needed? What is the expected endurance (time-distance-speeds) of this next-level prototype to be? Thank you.

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