Otto Aviation has unveiled its single 500-hp Red A03 diesel engine-powered Celera 500L business aircraft. The six-seater business aircraft could cut carbon emissions by up to 80% compared with conventional business aircraft, according to Otto. So far, 31 test flights have been completed.
With an unusual ‘bullet-shaped’ fuselage, the Celera was first spotted flying over California in 2017, but the company confirmed its existence only FAA certification is expected in 2023, with operational service to follow in 2025, said Otto Aviation.
“Our goal was to create a private aircraft that would allow for direct flights between any city pair in the US at speeds and cost comparable to commercial air travel,” said William Otto Sr., chairman and chief scientist at Otto Aviation.
“In many cases, individuals and families will be able to charter the Celera 500L at prices comparable to commercial airfares, but with the added convenience of private aviation. We believe when the price of private air travel is competitive with commercial air travel, an enormous market opportunity will result.”
Otto Aviation claims the Celera 500L has a maximum cruising speed of at least 450 miles per hour and a range of over 3,900nm. Fuel consumption is between 18 to 25 miles per gallon, according to Otto That compares with a traditional business jet, with similar capabilities, which would typically burn a gallon of fuel for every two to three miles of flight. The new aircraft’s fuel efficiency means running costs of about $328 per hour. The airplane also has a multi-stage turbocharger and can run on Jet A1 fuel, as well as kerosene or biodiesel.
This efficiency is made possible due to its laminar flow shape, which produces about 59% less drag than existing similar-sized, more conventionally-shaped aircraft, according to Otto Aviation.