The Future of Advanced Air Mobility

German start-up Baaz claims a competitive edge against other eVTOL aircraft on the basis that its wing will deliver greater payload and range, but retain operational flexibility by being able to fold inwards. Initially, the all-electric version of the aircraft would have range of up to 200 km (125 miles), with a possible hydrogen-powered version later extending this to 350 km (219 miles). The design of the five-seat B5 also features five sets of distinctive ducted propellers.

The small, privately funded company says that it aims to achieve type certification for the aircraft before the end of 2025, based on the assumption that it will have a full-scale prototype ready to start flight tests by early 2023. Baaz has filed patent applications for the folding wing and propulsion system and intends to file others covering its battery cooling system.

Baaz says that it intends to out-source most major components and systems to other companies while retaining overall control as technology integrator in charge of the aircraft's design and final assembly. Like other eVTOL aircraft developers, it plans to be involved in initial commercial operations.

Timeline

Projected

type certification granted

B5 completes EASA type certification
Projected

test flight

First flight of full-scale B5 prototype

Outlook

Our objective assessment of this program’s probable success.

FutureFlight assesses the probability of success for a new aircraft program by considering the following criteria:

  • Total investment funds available in proportion to the anticipated cost of getting an aircraft certified and in service
  • A company’s in-house capability (in terms of numbers of engineers, technical staff, and customer support teams)
  • The past experience of the company and its senior leadership in developing aircraft
  • The caliber and past experience of key program partners
  • Whether key aircraft systems have been selected and are available for use
  • Whether the preliminary design review has been completed
  • Whether the design for the full-scale prototype has been completed
  • Whether the type certification process has been formally initiated with an appropriate regulator
  • Whether the company has achieved a first flight with a full-scale prototype
  • The number of hours logged in a flight test program
  • Whether type certification has been achieved
  • The number of orders and commitment received for the aircraft
  • Whether the company has adequate facilities to begin series production of the aircraft
Our Methodology

Baaz's combination of a folding wing and five sets of ducted propellers is innovative. However, new design approaches like this can carry technology risks, resulting in protracted and costly development work, as was the case with Leonardo's AW609 tiltrotor and the Bell-Boeing MV-22 model.

For now the start-up is entirely dependent on private funding from its sole founder and it seems questionable whether funds will be sufficient to meet the ambitious timeline leading up to projected type certification in 2025. Also questionable, is Baaz's assumption that it will be directly involved in early-stage commercial operations of the aircraft, despite having no experience in the air transport business. Overall, there appears to be an imbalance between innovative engineering and a lack of a solid business plan.

Baaz B5 Models

B5 Specifications

local vtol Lift + Cruise

Performance

  • Passenger Capacity
    4
  • Range
    219 mi
  • Cruise Speed
    186 mph
  • Powerplant Type
    propeller
  • Power Source
    electric
  • Endurance
    n/a
  • Max Altitude
    n/a
  • Takeoff Distance
    n/a
  • Landing Distance
    n/a
  • Empty Weight
    n/a
  • MGTOW
    n/a
  • Payload Weight
    1,323 lb

Dimensions

  • Length
    7 ft
  • Width
    6 ft
  • Height
    5 ft
  • Wingspan
    44 ft

Baaz's B5 aircraft aims to deliver superior range to many all-electric eVTOL aircraft by having a large wing that can fold inwards in urban environments. Its propulsion system is based around five sets of ducted propellers. The aircraft is intended for air taxi operations, as well as multiple other applications, including government service flights, logistics, and emergency medical support.

The company has longer-term plans to develop a hydrogen-powered version that would deliver the full projected range of 350 km (219 miles). The initial all-electric version will be able to fly up to 200 km (125 miles).

Baaz aims to complete type certification by the end of 2025. 

Key Personnel

Hossein Malek Zadeh

Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Founder