Manta Aircraft and Avionord, a private air transport company highly specialized in medical air transport, have entered into an agreement to field as many as 15 hybrid-electric long-range vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft derived from the Manta Aircraft “ANN” platform in its medical services configuration. Avionord also invests in Manta Aircraft and takes a stake in the company. Deliveries are expected to start in 2026.
Because the hybrid-electric Manta aircraft features vertical take-off and landing and long-range flight capabilities, it is able to connect between helipads at hospitals in several different cities. This, combined with Manta’s low infrastructure requirements, low noise emissions, and cost effectiveness over traditional helicopters, results in new point-to-point capabilities and economic opportunities for regional medical transportation missions.
Above: The Manta eVTOL could provide quicker response times, smoother transport, and faster transportation to hospitals in cases of auto accidents and similar emergencies over traditional ground-based ambulances.
Lucas Marchesini, CEO of Manta Aircraft, comments: “We are very pleased of this partnership with Avionord, who have recognized the uniqueness of the ANN platform in terms of range, pushing into the direction of creating a real use case that will contribute to the rapid establishment of Advanced Air Mobility. From the outset, the design of the aircraft was planned for a relevant range and speed in combination with the low infrastructure requirements and overall costs at a fraction of the cost of a helicopter, in order to be suitable for this kind of operations.”
Said Avionord CEO Eugenio Cremascoli: “We are honored to be working with Manta Aircraft. After analyzing the market and considering our time-critical missions, we see that the Manta ANN platform is today the only eVTOL offering a range of several hundred kms, which is useful for the missions to transport quickly organs for transplantation from one hospital to another, avoiding being dependent on airports and road transport. The ANN eVTOLs will enable us to reduce the transportation time of the organs, that have a limited life when not connected to the dedicated machines, using aircraft with a reduced operating cost.”
Above: A Manta eVTOL is rendered performing a medical rescue mission for snow skiers
The investment of Avionord in Manta Aircraft follows the investment of other Italian tech companies and of the State-led CDP VC, in the effort to expedite the creation of an Italian AAM ecosystem. Manta is currently developing several kinds of hybrid-electric, long-range, vertical and short take-off and landing air vehicles designed for regional air mobility, planning to begin certification of the first two-seat, multi-purpose model ANN2 in 2023.
Why it’s important: The agreement between Manta Aircraft and Avionord establishes a promising partnership that will foster the development of an aerial mobility ecosystem in Italy, both for emergency services and for passenger-carrying operations. The initial use of Manta’s aircraft is planned mostly in special transports of organs for transplants, transport of equipment for re-perfusion of organs destined for transplantation, and for possible rapid-intervention operations, but later uses will likely include passenger transportation, which is Manta’s eventual goal.
Source // Manta Aircraft
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