Month: November 2018

NASA’s Urban Air Mobility Grand Challenge is part of a growing movement within the aviation community to develop a future urban air transport system. Here’s one artist’s rendition of how a future urban airspace might look. NASA is assessing responses to an initial Request for Information (RFI) as the first step in kicking off its Grand Challenge. Responses were due...

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VTOL Aviation India May Compete with Uber Elevate

29 November 2018 || 4 min read

A new startup has emerged in Mumbai, India. VTOL Aviation India seeks to develop a safe, effective, and efficient air taxi for India, even as Uber Elevate eyes the area for initial test flights. According to VTOL Aviation India’s website, its goal is to “define a transition aircraft concept with better performance in safety, noise, speed, range and payload than...

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At the Drone Week conference in Amsterdam, Audi and Airbus jointly showed off a one-fourth scale working model of the Pop.Up concept, which Airbus debuted in May of 2017. The Pop.Up is a three-part modular vehicle consisting of a passenger pod, a four-wheeled ground adaptation designed by Audi, and a a quad-copter attachment for urban flight. The Pop.Up model featured...

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Pop.Up concept model by airbus and Audi

Flying Car Startups Emerge in Israel

27 November 2018 || 3 min read

After selling his IoT software company to General Electric in 2017, Israeli entrepreneur Guy Kaplinsky has has founded flying car startup ‘New Future Transportation’. “The need for change is obvious, due to the increasing congestion in large cities and the ever-increasing traffic problems.” Says Kaplinsky, who plans to develop a flying car that can effectively take to the road as...

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Guy Kaplinsky future flying car

UK Architecture Firm Unveils Vertiport Design

26 November 2018 || 4 min read

A UK design consultancy firm called ‘small’, (Six Miles Across London Ltd.) recently showed the world its latest concept for a vertiport, designed specifically for the Volocopter, which will be conducting tests in Singapore in 2019. The vertiport has a modular design that allows its exterior to fitted with lounge and seating areas, repair and spare battery storage areas, and...

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small vertiport design

MIT Engineers Fly Plane Powered With Ionic Wind

24 November 2018 || 3 min read

What a flying car powered by ionic wind may one day look like. Scientists at MIT hit a major breakthrough earlier this week when they competed test flights of a model airplane powered completely by ionic wind. This means the aircraft had no moving parts, was completely silent, and produced absolutely no carbon emissions. It was also fully electric. A...

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An Ionic Wind Flying Car Concept

SkyGrid is a new company jointly founded by Boeing and SparkCognition to build AI-powered software for managing airspace with autonomous vehicles. SkyGrid’s purpose is to integrate all urban airspace traffic including cargo and passenger air vehicles as well as package delivery drones. According to its website, “SkyGrid is the world’s first artificial intelligence and blockchain-powered aerial operating system for next-generation...

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Jetcopter Releases New VTOL Concept

20 November 2018 || 4 min read

In early September, Jetcopter showed the world its concept for a jet-powered VTOL. Now, it has re-iterated the design with a larger version that can fit up to seven passengers.   In September, we noted Jetcopter’s unique design concept–it’s one of the only VTOLs that will be powered by jets rather than propellers. Earlier this week, Jetcopter released concept images...

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Jetcopter VTOL

Although Amazon hasn’t named these planned helipads as vertiports, the planned Helipads for the HQ2 buildings would work well for eVTOL transport. Jeff Bezos, as many know, has many ambitions and is extremely forward thinking. He’s not only the founder and CEO of Amazon, but is also the founder of commercial space travel company Blue Origin. As Amazon has continued...

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Amazon adds Helipads to New York Hq2

Dufour Aerospace Announces Senior Advisory Team

16 November 2018 || 4 min read

Dufour Aerospace is a unique VTOL start-up based in Switzerland. It’s mission is to develop a passenger VTOL for areas like the Swiss Alps, where mountainous terrain can cause extremely long travel times between cities. The Dufour team has already made significant progress by developing an electric airplane that has proven flight up to one hour, multiple times per day....

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NASA and Booz’s Executive Brief in Detail NASA and consulting firm Booz Allen Hamilton released a joint study on November 12 that outlined future projections of the urban aviation industry. The original executive briefing was presented on October 5th to NASA’s Aeronautics Research Directorate. Before we go into the details of the study, here are some of the key takeaways:...

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Vertical Aerospace Flying Car Aerial View

After its recent Urban Air Mobility Industry Day November 1st-2nd, NASA has announced its partnership with NextNav, a three dimensional mapping software.Unlike most traditional location services, maps by NextNav offer vertical accuracy as well as traditional GPS positioning. NASA plans to utilize NextNav’s Metropolitan Beacon System (MBS) as part of its testing efforts at its research center in Langley Virginia....

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They’re Great for Cars, But Not so Much Urban Aviation Over the last 20 years, batteries have been one of the slowest developed hardware components in the world. Solar power, advanced materials, and next generation manufacturing processes have all sparked new business and provided the technological momentum to create new industries. All but the battery. In order for the Urban...

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Tesla P90D

The goal of Rensselaer’s latest research center is to pursue cutting-edge research in vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) aircraft technologies. Earlier this month, the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) held a ribbon cutting ceremony attended by Uber Elevate Director of Engineering Mark Moore, as well as representatives from Terrafugia, Boeing, Aurora Flight Sciences, and Bell. While the opening of RPI MOVE...

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RPI Opens MOVE-Center for Mobility with Vertical Lift

The Lilium air taxi is getting closer to market. It recently hired Mirko Reuter, former head of Automated Driving at Audi, Jakob Waeschenbach, former head of Equipment Installation at Airbus, and Rochus Moenter, former Vice President of Finance and Leasing at Airbus. Lilium is a German company based out of Munich. Its air taxi design is one of the sleekest on the market, and...

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Lilium Air Taxi hires from Audi and Airbus