VW DRAGONFLY: A HALO VEHICLE DESIGNED FOR 2050
VW DRAGONFLY – Dragonfly is the notion of a suborbital glider that can traverse transcontinental routes quicker than any other mode of transportation. It was produced during the designer’s third semester in collaboration with Volkswagen’s Future-Research-Division.
WHY – VW DRAGONFLY
While the globe is becoming more technologically connected, he wondered how it would be able to cross huge distances between cities in a short amount of time and create a halo vehicle for VW in 2050, a modern-day Concorde.
Cities like New York and Sydney can be reached in 90 minutes, and the best part is that the technical idea isn’t a pipe dream; it’s something that NASA, SpaceX, and the DLR (German Aerospace Research Centre) are actively working on. The short flight periods are made possible by a process known as “rebound-flight” around the Earth’s equator. Dragonfly glides through the atmosphere as though on an air cushion, completing a parabolic flight curve in which it is only actively driven during lift phases.
Due to a lack of oxygen at an altitude of roughly 400km, this is accomplished via a solid-fuel engine at the rear, although when flying within the Earth’s atmosphere, two jet engines fitted between the fuselage and wings are employed. The second set of wings may be extended from the big primary wings for improved agility and take-off and landing on standard runways. These increase buoyancy, move the centre of gravity to the back, and are also responsible for the name “Dragonfly.” Because the objective was to produce a beautiful, sleek shape with an animal-like character, the sensors on the front are also meant to imitate insect-like eyes.
A pure passenger aircraft may transport up to 16 passengers in specially prepared containers or up to 16 people in specially designed containers. A detachable base plate allows for loading and unloading. To make this operation easier, the landing gear may be adjusted to tilt the entire aircraft upwards. These kinds of aircraft are required for emergency commodities that must be transported from point A to point B as quickly as possible, such as relief supplies, medical equipment, organs for transplantation, or similar items.
The flight is entirely self-contained. The most significant sensors required for this are positioned on a plate in the front, which can be removed or exchanged for maintenance or replacement with the most up-to-date technology.
DESIGN: VW DRAGONFLY
From an aesthetic standpoint, the design combines organic curves and contemporary lines, with influence drawn from sci-fi blockbusters such as Star Wars. Another distinguishing feature is the form of the hull: when examined in cross-section, the hull itself produces buoyancy. He treated the technical restrictions of the aerodynamic form very carefully since he wanted the concept to be as practical as possible given how outrageous it appears at first look.
Within these limits, he attempted to retain the appearance of a fast-looking, sleek, and futuristic aeroplane. Dragonfly isn’t meant to be the most practical mode of transportation because it’s designed for extremely specific purposes rather than general use. As an automotive or technological enthusiast, it is meant to be a halo car that you physically look up to and respect. Dragonfly demonstrates what is possible with amazing technology solutions and provides a look into a future worth aiming for, something I believe is far too frequently lacking these days.
Moritz Deininger is 24 years old and was born in Germany in Stuttgart. He has had a fascination for vehicles and motorbikes since he was a youngster, so after graduating high school, he studied mechanical engineering and received his bachelor’s degree in 2020. He is presently in the fifth semester of his Transportation Design studies at the University of Pforzheim. To him, design is practically a meditative activity, which means he can digest all kinds of inspirations and influences while talking through my designs.
He also enjoys combining this enthusiasm with a technical base, at least conceptually. His main sources of inspiration are movies, video games, architecture, and, of course, the world of vehicle and motorbike design. It is crucial for him to mention that looking back, he would have done a lot of things differently with the Dragonfly project, but it appears that he has matured as a designer. He is looking forward to future initiatives and acquiring more experience in the automobile business.