Today is the day Moller Interational was supposed to demonstrate untethered, manned flight with their Skycar M400X prototype. There have been no announcements on their website, and the blog section where this (among other things) was being discussed has been taken down, supposedly due to abusive fake postings by people impersonating Moller employees. Hmm… doesn’t seem like it would be rocket science to secure THAT, now does it?
After doing a bit more digging today, I unearthed an article in Yahoo! Finance which states that the demo has been postponed. This was released Sept 27, 2011. I find it very curious that Moller’s website does not have any of this information. One would think that platform would be an obvious way to communicate with the public and investors, and that from a PR standpoint, transparency would be a good idea. But hey, what do I know, eh?
According to the Yahoo! press release: “The new flight date will be announced once the final approvals have been given from the FAA, event sponsors, Moller's flight preparation team and an acceptable weather window can be identified.”
There’s lots of spin on there, but they say the rescheduled demo will be conducted at Lake Minden, a private 41 acre lake resort located 20 miles north of Sacramento International Airport.
The date, of course has not been set. Dumb, dumb, dumb. You’d think that Moller would want to regain a bit of credibility by setting a date (soon) and then actually (gasp) going through with it. But again, what do I know, eh?
I tend to agree with one of the followup posters on the above article: “Surely 35+ years is enough time to successfully overcome the relevant challenges. It might be time to let a more practical, results oriented leader take the reins. I suspect Burt Rutan could get the thing up and running in about 20 minutes.” Let’s give him a couple of months so he can do a really bang-up job!