Australian based AMSL Aero announced in a press release this week that it has completed first flight of its Vertiia eVTOL aircraft.
The Vertiia completed its tethered hover by remote control near Wellington in the Central West of the state in accordance with Civil Aviation Safety Authority regulations.
The maiden test flight is a significant milestone for the AMSL Aero, which expects its electric vertical take-off and landing aircraft to ultimately be competitive with a helicopter of equivalent performance and payload.
The company says the zero emissions Vertiia can carry four passengers and a pilot, with a cruising speed of 300kmph and a range of 1,000 kilometres, three times the range of any eVTOL craft anywhere in the world.
AMSL is headquartered in Sydney and has planned to manufacture Vertii across NSW and the greater Sydney area with suppliers in Victoria and South Australia.
“The Vertiia prototype flew better than we expected. It was remarkably smooth and a delight to fly,” Andrew Moore, CEO of AMSL Aero, said.
Following on the success of first flight, Vertiia will continue to undergo developmental testing followed by a series of tests to begin CASA certification. The company also plans to debut the prototype at the Avalon International Airshow in Victoria later next month.
Co-founder Siobhan Lyndon, a tech industry veteran who spent more than a decade at Google at various operations around the world, said Vertiia would enable greater access to medical services for vulnerable remote, rural and regional communities, offering new models of care through rapid and low-cost connectivity.
“Vertiia is not only safe and quiet, but it was also developed for the harsh long-distance conditions in Australia. If it can work in Australia, it can work anywhere,” she said.
Why it matters: One of the few Australian-based eVTOL makers, AMSL Aero has been relatively quiet since it announced its full scale prototype, Vertiia, in 2020. A successful first flight allows ASML to continue flight tests and move towards commercialization of the eVTOL. ASML Aero hopes to begin deliveries as early as 2026 and would be one of the first to achieve CASA certification.