Today, July 27th, Volocopter flew its 2X eVTOL aircraft at the Experimental Aircraft Association’s (EAA) AirVenture 2021 in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. The flight was the first ever public crewed test flight of a fully electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) air taxi in the US. The crewed Volocopter 2X took off at 2:45 PM CST for a 4-minute flight at ~164 ft and a...
Today, July 27th, Volocopter flew its 2X eVTOL aircraft at the Experimental Aircraft Association’s (EAA) AirVenture 2021 in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. The flight was the first ever public crewed test flight of a fully electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) air taxi in the US.
The crewed Volocopter 2X took off at 2:45 PM CST for a 4-minute flight at ~164 ft and a top speed of 18 mph over Wittman Regional Airport as part of EAA’s AirVenture aviation celebration. Event attendees were able to watch the Volocopter 2X fly and take a seat in the VoloCity model at Volocopter’s booth to experience these aircraft. Nicknamed the “World’s Greatest Aviation Celebration,” more than 600,000 visitors are expected to come to see pioneering designs in action.
Footage of the crewed test flight can be found here on Volocopter’s website.
“Oshkosh is a haven for enthusiasts and experts to embrace the pioneering spirit of aviation, and today’s Volocopter flight is one for the history books. This is the spirit of Oshkosh giving our visitors the chance to experience real pioneers, who will change aviation for good, right here,” says Rick Larsen, EAA Vice President of Communities and Member Programming.
“Volocopter successfully conducting the first US public manned test flight of an eVTOL company in the US is a milestone for the industry and a reminder that our commercial launch is fast approaching. We can talk about our lead in certification, low noise emissions, and global partnerships all we want, but nothing shows just how close we are to launch UAM as a service as does flying an air taxi in front of crowds and inviting people to sit in our aircraft. Air taxis are coming, and we are working to bring electric flights to cities around the globe in the next two to three years,” says Florian Reuter, Volocopter CEO.
Once certified for commercial launch in Europe, Volocopter is positioned for concurrent type certification approvals in the US from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), having applied earlier this year, and the civil aviation authority in Singapore (CAAS). The company already holds Design Organisation Approval and Production Organisation Approval, two strategic certification approvals from the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) to design and produce aircraft in-house.
Why it’s important: This successful flight marks a key milestone in Volocopter’s plan to raise awareness of air taxis among populations around the globe and is critical to the long-term success of delivering advanced air mobility (AAM) and urban air mobility (UAM) solutions.
Volocopter has moved one step closer to commercialization of its eVTOL prototype. The company announced this week it has received its Production Organization Approval (POA) from EASA, the aviation regulatory authority presiding over the EU. The approval allows the company to begin production of its eVTOL aircraft for public deliveries. Volocopter also received design organization approval (DOA) for its aircraft...
Volocopter has moved one step closer to commercialization of its eVTOL prototype. The company announced this week it has received its Production Organization Approval (POA) from EASA, the aviation regulatory authority presiding over the EU. The approval allows the company to begin production of its eVTOL aircraft for public deliveries.
Volocopter also received design organization approval (DOA) for its aircraft in 2019 and is the only eVTOL company to hold DOA and POA from EASA, according to the release.
In situ with the announcement, Volocopter also announced the acquisition of its partner, DG Flugzeugbau, a composite aircraft producer. Together with DG Flugzeugbau, Volocopter designed and built the VC200, the first electrically powered multicopter to receive a permit to fly it in 2016 and flew this model autonomously in Dubai in 2017 and on stage at the 2018 CES in Las Vegas. Since then, the two companies have partnered to produce the Volocopter 2X, the VoloDrone, and the VoloCity.
“Our ten-year partnership with DG Flugzeugbau has been an extraordinary learning experience,” Florian Reuter, CEO of Volocopter, said in a statement. “Having this legendary industry leader on our side to kick-start scalable and affordable UAM for people and cargo has been a game changer. Today marks an exciting milestone as we unify DG Flugzeugbau’s leadership in aviation production with Volocopter’s pioneering UAM goals to establish yet another crucial stepping-stone for our collective global endeavors.”
Volocopter has had a longtime partnership with DG Flugzeugbau and will utilize its facilities to scale its commercial launch in the coming years. The acquisition will allow Volocopter to integrate DG Flugzeugbau’s aircraft production segment and its new EASA POA, according to the release.
“At DG Flugzeugbau, we have always continued to strive for perfection through unique innovation with gliders, vast aerodynamic improvements, and, for the past ten years, with Volocopter’s eVTOLs,” Holger Back, CEO of DG Aviation, said in a statement. “We see the future in these aircraft and are excited to combine a section of our company with Volocopter to invest in the future of sustainable aviation while continuing our tradition of building gliders and maintaining aircraft.”
Why it matters: Volocopter is quickly building a ecosystem of aerial mobility products and services including VoloCity, VoloConnect, VoloDrone, VoloPorts, among others. The POA award from EASA ensures the company’s technical maturity has reached a level to support mass production of its prototype and will be suited for the public in the near future. Further, the acquisition of DG Flugzeugbau will help scale its operations for success in the market for years to come.
Volocopter and international logistics leader, DB Schenker, announced that they have successfully conducted a joint static proof of concept (PoC) at Messe Stuttgart for VoloDrone ground operations in logistic centers. Together, the partners are creating the first blueprint for electric cargo drone ground operations in logistics with the support of Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics. In 2011, Volocopter...
Volocopter and international logistics leader, DB Schenker, announced that they have successfully conducted a joint static proof of concept (PoC) at Messe Stuttgart for VoloDrone ground operations in logistic centers. Together, the partners are creating the first blueprint for electric cargo drone ground operations in logistics with the support of Fraunhofer Institute for Material Flow and Logistics.
In 2011, Volocopter performed the first-ever crewed flight of a purely electric multicopter and has since showcased numerous public flights with its full-scale aircraft. The most notable have been the public test flights at Singapore’s Marina Bay in October 2019 and the world’s first autonomous eVTOL flight in Dubai 2017. Volocopter is also developing products for the logistics space with their heavy-lift cargo variant, the VoloDrone.
The recent static PoC test demonstrated how logistics operators can manage personnel, payloads, automated ground vehicles, and VoloDrones to create an efficient process and a safe environment for future VoloDrone operations. The blueprint derived from these results will be the first of its kind and serve as a basis for integrating VoloDrone operations in logistics networks across the globe, realizing automation and sustainability ambitions in supply chains.
Christian Bauer, CCO of Volocopter, says: “By developing a blueprint for VoloDrone operations, Volocopter is leading the way into the next dimension of transport logistics with tangible and operational data backing our service claims. Our work with DB Schenker shows that they are a great investor, a valuable partner, and an enabler for our commercial VoloDrone operations.”
The research teams from Volocopter, DB Schenker, and Fraunhofer IML simulated the VoloDrone integration in a logistics network by examining the ground processes for coding goods, assessing safe cargo loads and goods, testing the automated supply of the drone through autonomous vehicles, and identifying other necessary pre-flight cargo checks. Following this, the processes for transporting and loading the VoloDrone payload were conducted and examined to identify safe, standard procedures for employees on the ground preparing the VoloDrone for flight.
The VoloDrone, Volocopter’s heavy-lift and versatile cargo drone, is battery powered, can transport a 200 kg payload up to 40 km, and has 18 rotors and motors powering the electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft. This UAM solution for intracity logistics will operate within Volocopter’s UAM ecosystem for cities, also consisting of passenger mobility services (VoloCity and VoloConnect), their infrastructure (VoloPort), and a digital backbone to coordinate and view all operations in real-time (VoloIQ). Learn more about the Volodrone aircraft in the TransportUP Hangar.
Why it’s important: Volocopter’s various partnerships with industry leaders in infrastructure, operations, and air traffic management will be critical components to expedite building the ecosystem necessary to ‘Bring Urban Air Mobility to Life’. As articulated by Erik Wirsing, Global Head of Innovation at DB Schenker, “the VoloDrone unlocks new possibilities for the logistics industry, and it represents a key element for DB Schenker’s innovation and sustainability roadmap for logistics. Volocopter’s leadership in this emerging urban air mobility industry is most evident in their practical solutions, their customer-centric approach, and their commitment to bring UAM to life.”
Source // sUAS News
Volocopter flew the Volocopter 2X electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft earlier this week at Le Bourget Airfield, during the Paris Air Forum. With the flight demonstration of the Volocopter 2X and the VoloCity model on static display onsite, the German UAM developer demonstrated the progress they are making to introduce eVTOL aircraft as an addition to existing transportation in...
Volocopter flew the Volocopter 2X electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft earlier this week at Le Bourget Airfield, during the Paris Air Forum. With the flight demonstration of the Volocopter 2X and the VoloCity model on static display onsite, the German UAM developer demonstrated the progress they are making to introduce eVTOL aircraft as an addition to existing transportation in the Paris region.
The flight lasted a duration of 3 minutes, was remotely controlled, and was the first public flight demonstration of an electrically powered air taxi in France. It gave the public a real-life experience with what eVTOL air taxis will look and sound like in operation. Attendees watched as the Volocopter 2X flew a 500 m route at speeds up to 30 km/h and 30 m high along the Le Bourget Airfield. This flight marks the beginning of a multi-step test and market development campaign in cooperation with the French Civil Aviation Authority (DGAC – Direction générale de l’aviation civile) to safely bring electric air taxis to the Île-de-France region. Attendees could sit inside the VoloCity model for a first-hand experience and detailed explanation of the benefits of electric air taxi services.
“The first flight today in Paris highlights Volocopter’s commitment to bring air taxi services to this region in time for the 2024 Olympic Games,” says Florian Reuter, Volocopter CEO. “The alliance of the Paris region, Groupe ADP, and RATP Groupe and their intent to bring electric air taxis to France is a stellar example of the collaborative approach we see to be the most successful for adding this exciting category of mobility to cities globally.”
Volocopter was announced as the first vehicle and operations partner for the launch of the urban air mobility industrial branch in Paris in September 2020. Now, the company is planning to open a local office and is recruiting staff and expanding local partnerships to ensure the new UAM solutions meet local demands. Volocopter is also working on an agreement with Groupe ADP and RATP Groupe to collaborate for the 2024 Olympics to enhance regional connectivity in a meaningful way and showcase the benefits and key attributes of urban air mobility.
Edward Arkwright, Deputy CEO of GROUPE ADP says, “Today, we were as close as never before in France to experience electric aviation. Volocopter is a vivid example of what the futures of aviation could look like, both carbon-free and innovative, that Groupe ADP wants to accompany thanks to our infrastructure assets, expertise, and know-how. Along with the other partners of the RE.Invent Air Mobility initiative, Volocopter is now ready to enter a first test flight campaign by September on the Pontoise airfield sandbox we have been building up in the past months. And we are thrilled to be partnering with them, RATP Group and DGAC towards our objective of flight demonstrations in the Paris Region during the 2024 Olympic Games, to lay the foundation of a strong UAM industrial ecosystem in France.”
Why it’s important: Volocopter remains the only organization with design Organization Approval (DOA) from EASA, and accordingly is marching forward steadily towards complete readiness and entry into services as a viable on-demand, commercial aerial mobility service. Their “ecosystem” approach to the full scope of aerial mobility aircraft applications (logistics, cargo, passenger, EMS, etc) aim to leverage diversification to find demand in any economic environment.
Near Earth Autonomy and Volocopter’s VoloDrone team announced last week that they will partner to test Near Earth Autonomy’s autonomous flight technology on Volocopter’s electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) VoloDrone aircraft. The technology demonstration will culminate in a Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) display in Munich scheduled for some time in the year 2022. Near Earth Autonomy has...
Near Earth Autonomy and Volocopter’s VoloDrone team announced last week that they will partner to test Near Earth Autonomy’s autonomous flight technology on Volocopter’s electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) VoloDrone aircraft. The technology demonstration will culminate in a Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) display in Munich scheduled for some time in the year 2022.
Near Earth Autonomy has conducted 3,500 flights lasting over 2,000 flight hours of their cutting-edge autonomy system across various aircraft types, sizes, and environments in the last eight years of aerial autonomy development. Volocopter and Near Earth Autonomy intend to demonstrate BVLOS capabilities for VoloDrone missions within the business-to-business transport sector.
“We are very excited to work together with the leading player in the aerial autonomy industry,” said Christophe Hommet, Volocopter Chief Engineer VoloDrone. “Near Earth Autonomy has years of experience, shown real results, and is going to help our VoloDrone stay ahead of the curve with autonomous capabilities.”
Sanjiv Singh, CEO of Near Earth Autonomy, commented, “Volocopter’s track record, unique safety design, and vision have established it as the leader in the eVTOL industry. We look forward to proving autonomy systems for their aircraft. Our shared vision of the future, and safety as an integral part of it, makes this an ideal partnership.”
Near Earth has already integrated their BVLOS autonomy systems with full-scale helicopters, both in piloted and remotely piloted configurations. The intent of technology integration with Volocopter will be to adapt their autonomy technology to seamlessly integrate with the overall eVTOL architecture while addressing the challenges of weight, power, and cost.
BVLOS capabilities for the VoloDrone would enable Volocopter to bring fully autonomous aerial cargo transportation to market. Volocopter’s projected market opportunity for VoloDrone transport services is estimated to be ~ $120 billion by 2035.
Why it’s important: BVLOS capability for VoloDrone is a major step toward fully autonomous aerial mobility aircraft for both cargo and passengers. The industry will likely begin autonomy with logistical and cargo application aircraft, and then move on to passenger-carrying versions. However the core IP of the integration will remain largely unchanged, putting Volocopter and Near Earth at the head of the industry’s development. Keep tabs on the progress of Near Earth and Volocopter as 2021 continues and the planned demonstration dates approach.
Volocopter unveiled its newest aircraft, VoloConnect, at EBACE Connect on May 17th. The VoloConnect is the company’s first winged aircraft, and is designed to link suburbs to cities, complementing the company’s existing family of aircraft that cover shorter range intra-city missions. Volocopter claims that VoloConnect’s hybrid lift and push design will achieve certification within the next five years due to the commonality of design...
Volocopter unveiled its newest aircraft, VoloConnect, at EBACE Connect on May 17th. The VoloConnect is the company’s first winged aircraft, and is designed to link suburbs to cities, complementing the company’s existing family of aircraft that cover shorter range intra-city missions. Volocopter claims that VoloConnect’s hybrid lift and push design will achieve certification within the next five years due to the commonality of design criteria and approaches that are being implemented along with Volocopter’s other offerings.
Florian Reuter, Volocopter CEO, characterized the motivation for the new aircraft: “VoloConnect embodies the next dimension of our mission to offer affordable, efficient, and sustainable flight mobility solutions for cities around the globe. Leveraging customer insights from our existing VoloCity and VoloDrone, VoloConnect’s capacity to support longer missions and higher payloads serves another strong growing market demand.”
VoloConnect uses a hybrid lift and push design to transport up to four passengers electrically on routes of 100 km at a speed of 180 km/h, with a top speed of ~250 km/h. The compact aircraft layout, necessary for urban missions, is naturally stable and highly efficient during forward flight, but also features a low stall speed. Volocopter’s Munich-based team of engineers, led by Chief Engineer Sebastian Mores, have been working on the aircraft for over two years and have filed several patents for its technology. Scaled prototypes of the VoloConnect are already in the flight test phase.
Volocopter and Geely Technology Group, a global mobility technology group, presented the Volocopter 2X eVTOL for the first time in China last week at the Shanghai International Automobile Industry Exhibition 2021. According to a joint press release issued, the companies are highlighting their cooperation and their aim to introduce urban air mobility to the Chinese market, giving visitors the chance...
Volocopter and Geely Technology Group, a global mobility technology group, presented the Volocopter 2X eVTOL for the first time in China last week at the Shanghai International Automobile Industry Exhibition 2021. According to a joint press release issued, the companies are highlighting their cooperation and their aim to introduce urban air mobility to the Chinese market, giving visitors the chance to learn more about this new form of transport.
Volocopter emphasized that in partnership with Geely Technology Group, its commercial on-demand aerial mobility services will soon be introduced in China. The company also shared that their current work is developing a scalable model for production and operations.
“Geely’s market leadership in China and forward-thinking approach to expanding mobility options make them a great strategic investor. They are an invaluable partner for bringing urban air mobility to China – one of the most promising markets for the UAM industry globally,” says Florian Reuter, CEO Volocopter.
Volocopter and Geely Technology Group have agreed to enter a joint venture to make UAM services in China a reality and have already applied for a business license. Both companies understand that public awareness in China is one of the key factors to successfully introduce this new mobility concept, which is why they chose to present the Volocopter prototype at the Auto Shanghai 2021.
Volocopter touts their 2X aircraft for its safety and low noise emission levels. Flying at a height of 100m, the sound level of the 2X is imperceptible over normal public street noise levels.
Volocopter is no stranger to operations in Asia. In 2019, the Volocopter 2X flew over Singapore’s Marina Bay to display the possibilities of ATM (air traffic management) and UTM (unmanned traffic management) integration and infrastructure. The current two seat 2X model would be the introductory aircraft utilized in China, but for future services, Volocopter will be using their fifth-generation aircraft, the VoloCity, which is currently in the certification process with European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). The VoloCity will have an increased speed of 110 km/h and an increased flight duration of 35 minutes.
Why it’s important: Volocopter’s partnership with Geely represents a major step toward Volocopter’s future operations in China. Geely Technology Group, a subsidiary of major Chinese company Geely Automotive Holdings, has even already entered into the growing field of aerial mobility by fully acquiring other mobility companies such as Terrafugia. Track the progress of Volocopter’s certification in China with the CAAC, or whether EASA and the CAAC reach an agreement for joint certification credit, as key indicators of future performance for Volocopter in China.
Volocopter published a white paper last week titled “The Roadmap to Scalable Urban Air Mobility” which characterized the requirements for future aerial mobility operations and growth. The release of the white paper is joined by the company’s continuing pledge for readiness of commercial scale (starting small) operations of eVTOLs within 2-3 years. Release of V2.0 follows Volocopter’s release of their...
Volocopter published a white paper last week titled “The Roadmap to Scalable Urban Air Mobility” which characterized the requirements for future aerial mobility operations and growth. The release of the white paper is joined by the company’s continuing pledge for readiness of commercial scale (starting small) operations of eVTOLs within 2-3 years. Release of V2.0 follows Volocopter’s release of their first White Paper, which occurred in 2019.
“Volocopter is leading the pack for implementing urban air mobility internationally. With our VoloCity and chosen go-to-market approach, we can fit into the existing ecosystem well enough to get started in the next 2-3 years,” said Florian Reuter, CEO of Volocopter. “However, in order to subsequently scale our operations in a safe and efficient manner and offer a fantastic experience to our customers, we need to establish a comprehensive and integrated UAM ecosystem. This is what we are doing together with our partners.”
While the focus of the 2019 white paper was largely engineering and systems-based, the second version of the white paper adapts a more holistic view to the ecosystem and supportive infrastructure for successful eVTOL operations and maintenance, real estate development, and customer user interface and experience traits. Additionally, it makes predictions for the relative market share between logistical vs passenger carrying operations in order to determine which should be given more development effort first. In a first for many white papers in the disruptive mobility space, Volocopter places special emphasis on the importance of customer service as the primary determination of recurring revenue from pleased customers.
Volocopter also shared in their white paper how they plan to implement UAM services in cities like Singapore and Paris with a scalable business approach. Some of the special considerations outlined in the paper include:
- The UAM industry is expected to have an €11.3 trillion addressable market by 2035 with a €241 billion market potential. Over half of the market potential lies in passenger mobility (e.g., VoloCity air taxi services), and the rest is covered by logistic-type, cargo services (e.g., VoloDrone services).
- Strong partnerships and an ecosystem strategy will play a pivotal role for entry into the electric air taxi market and will set a precedent for future UAM services – for example partnerships between real estate development companies, airspace integration services, and maintenance and repair operators’ manpower and expertise.
- The most successful approach will put the customer first in all critical areas including safety, infrastructure, aircraft design, air operations, city integration, and acceptance.
- Volocopter supports the high safety standards for air taxis defined by the EASA’s SC-VTOL and the progress with concurrent type certificate validation from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in the US and the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS).
- Digitalization and autonomous flight will help decrease prices for air taxi services in the long-term. Volocopter is already underway to ensure that the aircraft produced can fly autonomously and that all various components of the UAM ecosystem can be connected using a digital backbone and platform, VoloIQ.
Why it’s important: Volocopter’s white paper 2.0 reflects the progress made over the past two years towards aerial mobility’s commercial implementation. The discussion has shifted from engineering and design of eVTOL aircraft to infrastructure, maintenance, operation, and customer integration – logical next steps in the design lifecycle which are equally as important if not more so than initial design. Further, the white paper provides stratification for the predicted relative demands between logistical and passenger carrying operations, and outlines considerations for how the progression from piloted operations in 2023 will evolve to completely autonomous operations in 2032.
Read the full white paper here.
Source // Volocopter Press Release
Volocopter has just announced the signing of their Series D funding round, which successfully amassed €200 million in additional capital. According to the company, the funds will be used to “solidify [its] leading position in the UAM market by bringing the VoloCity, the battery-powered air taxi for cities, to certification and by accelerating the launch of its first commercial routes.”...
Volocopter has just announced the signing of their Series D funding round, which successfully amassed €200 million in additional capital. According to the company, the funds will be used to “solidify [its] leading position in the UAM market by bringing the VoloCity, the battery-powered air taxi for cities, to certification and by accelerating the launch of its first commercial routes.” Cumulatively, Volocopter has now raised €322 million.
Volocopter is in the final stages of providing new, sustainable mobility options for cities around the world. Their future services range from electric autonomous air taxis flying passengers directly and safely to their destinations, to transporting goods with the company’s VoloDrone.
“Volocopter is ahead of the curve in the UAM industry, and we have the achievements to prove it,” says Florian Reuter, CEO of Volocopter, in a recent press release. “No other electric air taxi company has publicly performed as many flights in cities around the world, with full regulatory approval, as Volocopter has. Our VoloCity is the fifth generation of Volocopter aircraft and has a strong path to being the first certified electric air taxi for cities. Volocopter already has the extensive partnerships necessary to set up the UAM ecosystem for launching both our company and the industry into commercial operations. We are called the pioneers of UAM for a reason, and we plan to keep that title.”
Volocopter advertises a holistic offering to the UAM market by developing a full ecosystem to connect all the vital parts to get the industry off the ground. This includes multipurpose aircraft (VoloCity and VoloDrone), and physical and digital infrastructure (VoloPort and VoloIQ), as well as partnerships with global leaders in their respective fields.
New investors in Volocopter include funds managed by BlackRock, global infrastructure company Atlantia S.p.A., Avala Capital, mobility technology giant Continental AG, global technology focused investment fund Jericho Capital, global technology and business solutions provider NTT via its venture capital arm, Tokyo Century, a leading Japanese leasing company, leading family offices, and others. All existing investors, including Geely, Daimler, DB Schenker, Intel Capital, btov Partners, Team Europe, and Klocke Holding amongst others also joined the round.
Volocopter has performed several milestone flights in Helsinki, Stuttgart, Dubai, and over Singapore’s Marina Bay in recent years. While the first routes are yet to be announced, the company has committed to establishing air taxi services in Singapore and Paris, with plans to expand many more routes in the US, Asia, and Europe.
Why it’s important: Volocopter has ten years of development experience, and is the first and only electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) company to receive Design Organisation Approval (DOA) by the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). The company has also exhibited the ability to attract investors from a variety of companies across the globe, positioning it to thrive in international markets as its services naturally expand. The capital these investors have committed to Volocopter will be instrumental as it works toward opening initial commercial air taxi routes within the next two years as planned.
Source // Volocopter press release
Volocopter announced on January 15th that the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has accepted their application for concurrent Type Certificate validation which they submitted earlier in December. This sets the basis for Volocopter to bring their electric air taxi services to the American market. Volocopter is the first and only electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) company in the world with...
Volocopter announced on January 15th that the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has accepted their application for concurrent Type Certificate validation which they submitted earlier in December. This sets the basis for Volocopter to bring their electric air taxi services to the American market.
Volocopter is the first and only electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) company in the world with Design Organization Approval (DOA), which gives them license to develop and build certified aircraft from the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). The company is currently in the process of receiving EASA Type Certification for their multi passenger VoloCity aircraft, and is now concurrently seeking FAA approval to enter the U.S. market with its EASA type certificate in order to accelerate its worldwide expansion.
Volocopter stated in a press release that they’re focused on promoting seamless, 100% electric mobility within congested cities, and have engaged in partnerships with Singapore, Paris, and Dubai as global pioneer cities for the aerial mobility industry.
“By focusing on a collaborative approach to success, we are bringing excellence, expertise, and experience to the table together with our partners, and with that, we are leading the way to bring urban air mobility to life in cities around the globe,” said Florian Reuter, CEO of Volocopter. He added that certification was a primary consideration for Volocopter while creating their aircraft, and that design considerations took into account requirements of certification. Ideally, this will allow a quicker timeline to certification once flight testing and data collection efforts become required.
The VoloCity, Volocopter’s electric air taxi, is designed to meet the highest aircraft safety standards and features the lowest noise development in the industry. Volocopter developed the VoloCity specifically to meet growing demand for better intra-city mobility in large cities like Los Angeles, New York City, San Francisco, and Washington D.C. among others. Volocopter added that these types of aircraft would promote job creation in deployment cities and that the ultimate target is on-demand air taxi services that are of comparable costs to a traditional taxi.
Volocopter is currently working with EASA on certification for commercial launch planned in the next 2-3 years. When Volocopter receives type certification approval from EASA, immediately followed by the FAA validation in this timeframe, they will be positioned to enter the electric air taxi market and pave the way for the UAM industry to expand services globally.
Another component of this certification announcement from the FAA is the availability of concurrent type certificate validation. Concurrent type certification validation allows Volocopter to show compliance to their regulatory governing board, EASA, whereby the FAA would then claim concurrent credit for these activities. What’s not known is how the FAA will either honor or create additional requirements to the Special Conditions for eVTOL certification that EASA has created, given VoloCity will be an aircraft of novel configuration without an similar comparator that has previously been certified.
Why it’s important: The FAA’s agreement to allow for concurrent type certificate validation reduces a huge amount of certification workload for Volocopter and will pave the way towards an FAA certified aircraft in the coming years. The industry should now expect many European eVTOL makers to follow a similar path, though EASA concurrent type certification of FAA natively certified aircraft has not yet come to fruition.
Joby, Volocopter And Lilium Are Making A Risky, Expensive Bet On Vertical Integration To Invent Urban Air Mobility
This article, written by Dean Donovan, was originally published on Forbes. Shared on TransportUP with permission. It’s official: Joby Aviation is buying Uber Elevate. The electric air taxi developer will integrate the Uber Elevate team into its core operation; Uber and Joby will expand their partnership to provide a seamless multi-modal experience and share data on how to provide the...
This article, written by Dean Donovan, was originally published on Forbes. Shared on TransportUP with permission.
It’s official: Joby Aviation is buying Uber Elevate. The electric air taxi developer will integrate the Uber Elevate team into its core operation; Uber and Joby will expand their partnership to provide a seamless multi-modal experience and share data on how to provide the right services to customers; and Uber will invest $75 million into Joby, which is on top of its previously undisclosed $50 million investment in Joby’s Series C financing round in January 2020.
This move should support Joby’s strategy of both building a new type of electric aircraft almost entirely in-house as well as operating an airline. Elevate should also give Joby unparalleled competitive and ecosystem intelligence into some of its competitors given that Elevate had engaged Hyundai, Pipistrel, Jaunt Air Mobility, Bell, Signature Flight Support and Chargepoint, among others, as partners in the aerial ride-sharing network that Uber had planned on building. Most industry observers believe that Uber Elevate has built a high-quality group that provides access to arguably the most well-thought through network planning effort in the industry. This could provide benefits in market selection, scale-up and asset utilization of an airline.
Joby is taking a different approach than exists today in most mobility related industries. Over the last few decades, truck and airplane manufacturers have tended to decrease their level of vertical integration to improve capital efficiency and utilize specialized skills developed in the supply chain. Joby is not alone in this break with the recent past. Lilium has also announced plans to forward integrate into air taxi service. Volocopter, the German autonomous aviation company, has launched an air taxi service called Volocity and is aiming to begin operations in Singapore. At the same time, other players in the air mobility space like Jaunt Air Mobility and Bye Aerospace have opted for a leaner, less vertically integrated approach. Will one approach trump the other?
This isn’t going to be cheap
New aircraft programs cost a lot of money to move through certification. On the commercial side of the market, a new narrow-body aircraft could cost $10 billion to $15 billion and can take 10 years or more to bring to market. At the Revolution Aero conference earlier this month, Lee Human of Aerotec, a leading consultancy in this space, suggested that vertically integrated eVTOL (electric vertical takeoff and landing) programs would likely require $3 billion to move through certification alone.
Technological innovation creates certification timing and cost risk. eVTOL aircraft will have systems that look fundamentally different than most of today’s small aircraft including, eventually, the provision for autonomous operation. The Eclipse 500, a program that pushed the edge of the technological envelope to pioneer the very light jet (VLJ) category, has become emblematic of the risks of a technology forward approach. The program started in 1998 and only received certification in mid-2006 partially due to a requirement to re-engine the aircraft mid-stream. The first deliveries came in 2007, almost 9 years after the start of the program. The company ultimately ran out of capital due to cost overruns associated with the delays and the 2008 recession.
Setting up a scale commercial carrier will add another layer of capital needs on top of the certification costs of the aircraft. JetBlue raised $128 million to finance its start-up with two planes, and Volaris, now the largest low-cost carrier in Mexico, raised a similar amount to start with four aircraft. However, new commercial operators have the advantage of a well-developed leasing market that allows them to finance new aircraft at attractive prices. They can also slot right into the existing commercial aviation airport infrastructure with limited initial capital investment.
Starting an eVTOL-based air taxi service at a similar scale could cost much more. Given the relatively small capacity of these new eVTOL aircraft (typically four seats or less), to have the same seat capacity as JetBlue or Volaris on start-up one of these new operations might need 70 to 140 aircraft. At $1 million per aircraft that would be $70 million to $140 million in acquisition costs. Given the unknown lifecycle of these new aircraft, financing that via an affordable leasing program seems unlikely. Aircraft acquisition only represents a part of the total expense, which will include start-up expenses, inventory, route development and other overhead costs. In addition, these air taxi services will need to find new investment for charging infrastructure, terminal infrastructure, maintenance facilities etc. Growing the model would require even more capital for aircraft and for developing new routes, which can take 9-12 months to ramp to profitability in commercial aviation.
Put this all together and it may take $4 billion or more to fully develop a vertically integrated business in the UAM space. That business case will come with potentially high variability in terms of timing and cost that investors will need to plan around. Of course, the rewards of pioneering what Morgan Stanley predicts could become a $1.5 trillion market could make those risks more than worthwhile.
Historical Precedents: “We are the Uber of Aviation…”
Elevate ensured that the UAM space lives in a giant shadow cast by the analogy of Uber’s auto ride-sharing model. Uber took a cottage industry, the taxi business, professionalized and modernized it. Ride-sharing models utilized a contract workforce that knows how to drive and brings its own assets. It took the suboptimal taxi user experience and improved it dramatically, while simultaneously reducing the cost of service significantly through smart network management. Not surprisingly, these factors led to the rapid growth of demand and an asset-light business model. It was expensive to build out, but the operating leverage is less than a model that has to buy or finance the assets it took to operate.
Uber tried to build a similar on-demand model for the world of aviation, where it quickly became clear that regulation, labor relations and asset ownership conditions will create a different, less favorable business model. Some companies have attempted ride-sharing style models in aviation and have run afoul of the FAA. Aviation requires a highly skilled workforce that tends to unionize and scales slowly. The low passenger to pilot ratio will create a pilot shortage if the UAM markets scale in a significant way. These potential bottlenecks have led most competitors to set autonomous operation goals to enable scalability and manage costs. Carriers must buy their own assets or lease them, if financing is available, and take responsibility for their operations. As a result, vertically integrated UAM carriers will have asset intensive operations.
While it may seem a departure today, aviation and aerospace were vertically integrated in the era where airmail contracts guaranteed significant volume at set pricing. Boeing purchased aircraft engine maker Pratt & Whitney in 1929 and had started United Airlines before subsequently growing it via merger. The guaranteed volumes and pricing from airmail contracts limited Boeing’s exposure to the high levels of operating leverage this strategy created. In fact, those guarantees were so lucrative they led to scandal and eventually the Airmail Act of 1934. That law prohibited aircraft manufacturers from owning airlines and forced Boeing to divest United Airlines and to the spin-out of what eventually became United Technologies (including Pratt and Whitney). Although regional aviation receives some Federal money via the Essential Air Service program, these tend to serve poorer rural areas, not the premium services wealthy urban areas the UAM companies plan to target initially. Unlike Boeing in the 1930s, today’s vertical integrators will need to create their own stable, attractively priced demand to cover their operating leverage.
In contrast, Delta started as a company to solve a specific use case — the boll weevil infestation of the early 1920s. The company built aircraft for crop dusting and then built a crop-dusting aviation service to solve the problem. Designing a solution for a completely new use case feels analogous to the challenge that Lilium, Volocopter and Joby face today. Trying to solve the use case end-to-end via a tightly coordinated team could simplify the challenge. In addition, it is not clear that Lilium could find an air taxi airline customer for its UAM aircraft even if it wanted to do so. The carrier models that could buy and operate these aircraft simply don’t exist today, nor would most airlines feel comfortable operating this type of equipment on their own. To quote David Merrill, CEO of Elroy Air, who has considered building his own freight carrier in addition to the development of the company’s Chaparral autonomous cargo aircraft, “our commercial logistics customers understand the enormous value of our autonomous aircraft in expanding express middle-mile capacity, but many don’t want the added complexity of operating it in the early years.” (My firm DiamondStream Partners is an investor in Elroy Air.)
The Benefits And Risks Of Making An All-In Bet
Ultimately, aviation models usually depend on two things for success: directness of routing to save time, and cost to produce the service (of which the biggest driver is asset utilization). The Elevate team combined with the Uber Partnership, can help Joby significantly in both respects. Via its modeling efforts around UAM network optimization Elevate’s insights can help reduce costs by improving asset utilization of the carrier model. Its practical experience with Uber Copter into how to integrate ride-sharing networks into UAM services to create seamless multi-modal experiences should cut time off customer trips. Based on what we know about stimulation of aviation demand, those two value-adds should help grow the market significantly.
Set against those benefits, stand a few substantial risks. Unlike Boeing’s vertical integration strategy of the 1920s and 1930s, new UAM carriers will find it hard to predict volume early on. Cars represent a formidable competitor. They cost about 37 cents a passenger mile at average occupancy — probably a tenth or less of what UAM services will initially cost. Commuters are highly sensitive to transportation costs and a 22-mile commute each way might cost $130/week via car including parking. At $2/mile, which is the cost for an Uber ride-share today, the same commute would cost about $440/week. At $4/mile, a more realistic initial price for UAM services, it would cost closer to $880/week, although it could be lower in the case of someone who works remotely most days. In an environment where increasing numbers of people work from home and congestion eases, the time advantage of a multi-modal trip based on flights may also decline.
In addition, competition from new forms of fixed-wing aircraft could limit UAM volume, particularly in the early years before urban vertiport infrastructure build outs. Fixed-wing airplanes retrofitted with hybrid-electric propulsion systems should become available about the same time as eVTOL aircraft. These fixed-wing planes could transport passengers at lower cost than the initial eVTOL vehicles due to the greater efficiency of fixed-wing flight, the ability to use existing fueling infrastructure, and their larger number of seats. These types of operations could also scale more easily due to the higher passenger to pilot ratio. In commercial aviation, operators that fly smaller, less efficient aircraft often find themselves in the role of developing routes for operators with lower cost, higher capacity planes.
A third concern involves unionization. Given the scale of operations that UAM businesses plan to develop, this industry will most likely have unions that look more like the unions in the regional aviation or the commercial aviation industry than the less unionized charter industry. Pilots unions tend to negotiate contracts that increase the operating leverage of today’s commercial airlines, although some low-cost carriers have variable pay union contracts. As the demand for pilots from electric aviation growth increases, pilot shortages could give unions increased leverage over these businesses. More importantly for the vertical integrators, the unions will probably express reservations about the pace and safety of the transition to autonomous flight technology that the UAM companies will depend on to push costs down and stimulate demand.
Finally, this strategy could create some channel conflict between the vertical integration plays and pure play carriers. Uber Elevate comes complete with a valuable network of partners. Many of these, like the relationship with Signature Flight Support, should translate seamlessly into Joby’s vertically integrated model. However, why should the airframe partners want to support the network of one of their largest and best financed competitors? Even with a carrier strategy, none of the airframe companies with vertical integration plans will have the capital to roll-out these networks globally right away. It will just cost too much. If it is demand and not vehicles in short supply, non-affiliated airlines may choose to use vehicles from manufacturers that don’t compete in their core business.
Partnership strategies can help mitigate some of the risks from operating leverage and labor relations that vertical integration will create. Today, the major commercial carriers purchase capacity from the regional carriers instead of owning and operating those fleets. WheelsUp had a similar kind of operating arrangement with Gama in private charter. While these arrangements certainly have their advantages, the operating leverage will live somewhere in the vertically integrated system and the partners will probably not want to accept the operating leverage without some type of guaranteed volume contract.
Playing To Win
In the end, UAM represents an entirely new transportation model that requires new technology, infrastructure, systems and regulatory frameworks to deliver a cost-effective transport solution with direct connections and a good customer experience. Vertical integration strategies give Joby, Lilium, and Volocopter more control over the levers required to launch in the industry, which could give them, and by extension the entire industry, a better chance of large-scale customer adoptions. However, this strategy also comes with far greater capital requirements, the daunting task of becoming the best at multiple steps of the value chain, and the prospect of channel conflict that slows scaling in their non-priority markets.
The Lilium, Joby, and Volocopter carrier strategies suggest they believe proprietary volume will ramp up quickly. These companies face a chicken and egg problem: To stimulate demand they need the scale, but to pay for the capital required to grow demand also requires scale. When demand is uncertain, playing to win by increasing operating leverage takes vision, courage and deep pockets.
After committing to launching a commercial eVTOL platform in Singapore within the next two to three years, Volocopter has now announced that advance tickets for their eVTOL flight service, VoloFirst, have officially sold out. The VoloFirst flights, priced at $365 USD per ticket (€300), will consist of a short scenic routes, a 10-15 minute flight “over the Southern waters, offering...
After committing to launching a commercial eVTOL platform in Singapore within the next two to three years, Volocopter has now announced that advance tickets for their eVTOL flight service, VoloFirst, have officially sold out. The VoloFirst flights, priced at $365 USD per ticket (€300), will consist of a short scenic routes, a 10-15 minute flight “over the Southern waters, offering breathtaking views of the Marina Bay skyline.” The initial VoloFirst flights are expected to commence sometime in 2023.
The German aviation startup has been doing intensive work in Singapore for some time now, making strides in development and successfully performing several test flights, including a high-profile manned flight in late 2019. While Singapore is relatively untroubled by traffic congestion relative to other major urban centers (which is arguably the biggest driving factor for the rapid growth of the aerial mobility industry), the island-city state holds plenty of potential capital, as well as a strong tech research sector, both factors which seem to be leading Singapore to become a very valuable benefactor for Volocopter.
According to Florian Reuter, CEO of Volocopter, “Singapore is renowned for its leading role in adapting and living new technologies. Our successful cooperation with the Economic Development Board, Ministry of Transport, and Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore on our previous flight has shown that there is no better place in Asia to launch our electric air taxi services than in Singapore. The city’s research institutes conducting R&D play an integral part in this. Topics like route validation for autonomous operations, material science, and research regarding battery technology are very important for our long-term business success.”
In order to meet their deadline of just 3 years, Volocopter intends to build up a team of more than 200 in the coming years, and remains confident that they will be able to reach their goal on schedule. As of now, the biggest obstacle in Volocopter’s path is certification, not only with EASA authorities, but local Singaporean authorities as well before Volocopter will be able to service passengers. However with the relative simplicity of Volocopter’s design, especially in comparison to the designs of other competitors, it could be entirely possible to see eVTOLs ferrying tourists and early adopters alike in 2023.
Why it’s important: Volocopter’s declaration of getting a commercial aerial mobility platform up and running in three years is an aggressive one, but is far from improbable. Considering both the simplicity of Volocopter’s eVTOL design as well as the expectation that initial flights will resemble tourist rides more than an actual method of commute, Volocopter’s goal is ambitious, but definitely possible. Volocopter’s aggressive approach is also completely understandable. Successfully getting their eVTOL platform up and running would have Volocopter passing one of the biggest milestones in the aerial mobility sector and be years ahead of most competitors.
Source // New Atlas
Volocopter has released the first worldwide study in partnership with ADAC Luftrettung on the role of eVTOL platforms in air rescue operations. The study was has spanned nearly two years of research and technology demonstrations across Bavaria and the Rhineland and has tried to determine if an aerial mobility focused rescue service system can expedite the transport of doctors and...
Volocopter has released the first worldwide study in partnership with ADAC Luftrettung on the role of eVTOL platforms in air rescue operations. The study was has spanned nearly two years of research and technology demonstrations across Bavaria and the Rhineland and has tried to determine if an aerial mobility focused rescue service system can expedite the transport of doctors and other medical professionals. The two companies previously launched simulated rescue operations a year ago in Germany.
The goal of the study is to determine the feasibility in transporting emergency doctors, rather than direct patient transport. Volocopter envisions working to complement rapid air assistance rather than replace it in early implementations.
Florian Reuter, CEO of Volocopter, commented, “The VoloCity is the first multicopter worldwide that is already in the process of commercial certification, and together with ADAC Luftrettung, it could already save lives today.
According to the study, significant improvements in emergency care for an operating radius of 25 to 30 kilometers has been shown. Cruise speed of the multicopter should be between 100 and 150 km/h with a minimum range of approx. 150 kilometers. These ideal conditions would be technically possible in about four years.
With such multicopters, emergency physicians could often be at the scene of an emergency twice as fast in rural areas compared to a conventional emergency medical service vehicle and reach around two to three times as many patients in a larger health service area. According to the study, multicopters were demonstrated as an adequate means in combatting the shortage of emergency doctors in many places and enabling current emergency doctors to work more efficiently. This was one of the most important findings of the study in light of the national average emergency physician arrival time worsening in the last 20 years by almost 40 percent.
“The work of the project participants is very impressive. Today we are convinced that multicopters can help shape and improve future rescue services. The results are so promising that we will pursue operational testing of the project,” announced Frédéric Bruder, Managing Director of the non-profit ADAC Luftrettung.
The study not only reviewed the technical elements of the mission profile but also legal, economic, and societal implications. They found that cost-efficiency is possible to achieve when compared relative to other investment requirements in the healthcare industry. Furthermore, the study found this implementation of eVTOL platforms could help solidify their position as a global leader in innovation and even become an incubator for them in the future.
Why it matters: This study between Volocopter and ADAC Luftrettung not only demonstrates Germany’s commitment to applying aerial mobility platforms on a large scale in the near term, but also dives deeper into the secondary and tertiary effects of its ambitions. On the surface, enhancing air response for emergency medical professionals will improve network efficiency and ultimately save lives. These advancements, however, underly Germany’s overall investment in aerial mobility and its desire to be a global leader in ushering in the next era of aviation.
Earlier last week TransportUP covered the Volocopter press release outlining provisional steps for a partnership with Japan Airlines. The intent of this partnership is to supplement the current aerial mobility sphere in Japan, through the combination of aerial transport already provided by JAL and the support of shorter intra-island routes via air taxis. These routes are reportedly to cover both...
Earlier last week TransportUP covered the Volocopter press release outlining provisional steps for a partnership with Japan Airlines. The intent of this partnership is to supplement the current aerial mobility sphere in Japan, through the combination of aerial transport already provided by JAL and the support of shorter intra-island routes via air taxis. These routes are reportedly to cover both urban areas (intracity routes) and intercity and even more remote use cases to provide for transportation of goods and services to areas beyond those common to ultra-high population densities.
This announcement comes 6 months after JAL’s Innovation Fund invested in Volocopter GmbH earlier this year – but differs from the general slew of investment fund trends for one key reason.
According to Volocopter’s press release, “JAL will provide their in-depth knowledge accumulated via safe aircraft operation experience to a next-generation air mobility operation platform service. In addition, through air mobility services, JAL aims to deliver medical care in remote areas to achieve key sustainable development goals.”
An increasing number of intercity and intracity use cases have been defined for aerial mobility aircraft, but the vast majority of rural operations focus on human aid and disaster relief, as well as logistics operations. Due to Japan’s more unique population of more elderly citizens in rural portions of the country (many of which lacking easy access to transportation) the emphasis on rural operations is a special identifier for this join venture. Generally, one of the most underestimated market segments for aerial mobility operations are transport to/from urban centers to remote locations 100-150 miles away. Given that a slightly older population living further outside of larger cities in many cases has more disposable income than those who are younger and tend to live in urban centers, early adopters of aerial mobility transport from rural areas may number larger than many projections estimate.
While Volocopter does not yet have a certified aircraft per Japanese Civil Aviation authorities, the company told Helicopter Investor in an interview that transferral of certification credit from EASA was being considered as a more efficient means to deployment.
Why it’s important: The operational experience of Japan Airlines should provide the stability and foundation for larger scale aerial mobility operations. Volocopter will be committing their significant investments toward their air taxi to the partnership, but the frequent flyer customer base from JAL should serve as a readily available trial market once a certified aerial mobility aircraft is available for transport.
Read the press release here.
Volocopter has made two major announcements this week with regards to the development of its aerial mobility service as well as the testing of its electric air taxi, the VoloCity. The company has teamed with Groupe ADP and RATP Groupe to be the first industrial player to test their full-scale electrical air taxi, the VoloCity, in the Paris Region. Additionally,...
Volocopter has made two major announcements this week with regards to the development of its aerial mobility service as well as the testing of its electric air taxi, the VoloCity. The company has teamed with Groupe ADP and RATP Groupe to be the first industrial player to test their full-scale electrical air taxi, the VoloCity, in the Paris Region. Additionally, Volocopter and Japan Airlines (JAL) entered into a cooperation agreement to promote UAM development for next generation air transportation options of passengers and goods.
The agreement outlines that Volocopter and JAL work on permanent sustainable commercial operations of air taxis in Japan. By establishing local partnerships, jointly approaching Japanese cities and prefectures and working on market demand and social acceptance, JAL and Volocopter will prepare for commercial launch in Japan within the next 3 years. JAL will provide their in-depth knowledge accumulated via safe aircraft operation experience to a next-generation air mobility operation platform service. In addition, through air mobility services, JAL aims to deliver medical care in remote areas to achieve key sustainable development goals.
JAL, Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance, and MS&AD InterRisk Research & Consulting, who are all invested in Volocopter, also announced a collaboration to accelerate Volocopters entry into the Japanese Market. The collaboration of airline operator, insurance provider, and business development partners as well as an Urban Air Mobility pioneer makes this approach a sustainable and promising one.
Meanwhile, Volocopter’s agreement with Paris region, Groupe ADP and RATP Groupe has promising implications in the current context of environmental transition in air transport, economic recovery, and urban densification. The two have decided to bring together all the conditions to make the emergence of this new mode of transport possible to complement the existing modes, whether for the public or for goods.
“The structuring and development of an Air Mobility branch on the airfield of Pontoise – Cormeilles-en-Vexin is both consistent with the Recovery Plan initiated by Paris Region, and in line with the key takeaways of Paris Region recent COP 2020 conference. It also falls within the scope and priorities of the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic games. As a result, this event represents an invaluable opportunity to involve the entire Aviation Industry and demonstrate the unique qualities of Paris Region as an area of reference within the global Urban Air Mobility (UAM) market,” according to Valérie Pécresse, President of Paris Region.
“Today, we aim at exploring and enabling the development of all potential futures of a decarbonized and innovative aviation,” noted Edward Arkwright, Deputy CEO of Groupe ADP. “Urban Air Mobility, driven by an all-electric vehicle capable of a vertical takeoff and landing, will be able to take-off and accelerate its development through the establishment of a sandbox at our Pontoise airfield, a unique testing opportunity in Europe. In partnership with Paris Region and RATP group, and in the framework of an international call for expression of interest, we are strongly positioned to federate a unique ecosystem in Paris Region, by combining our infrastructures assets, our know-how and expertise in terms of mobility and our territorial anchoring.”
Why it’s important: The prospect of the 2024 Olympic and Paralympic Games provides an exceptional opportunity to involve an entire industry and to make Paris Region a leader in the global market of Urban Air Mobility. Volocopter, the German electric air taxi company, reinforces the project’s feasibility by bringing its 9 years of aviation experience to the initiative. Simultaneously, the expansion in to operations with JAL is demonstrative of the company’s growing list of industry partners, and its strong reputation. As one of the most punctual major international airlines and a certified 5-Star Airline by Skytrax, JAL is committed to providing customers with the highest levels of flight safety and quality in every aspect of its service, and believes Volocopter can assist in carrying out its mission.
Source // Volocopter press release