SkyDrive, developer of a compact electric air vehicle that’s intended to ‘make flying vehicles a realistic choice of daily transportation’ in Japan and abroad, has announced that it will showcase its SD-03 prototype at a major technology conference in Dubai. At the same event, SkyDrive also plans to unveil its SD-05 design, which will be far closer to the aircraft SkyDrive eventually plans to sell.

Above: SkyDrive’s SD-03 prototype, which has already taken manned demonstration flights

The GITEX GLOBAL conference is one of the largest technology conferences in the world, featuring technologies in development like virtual reality, artificial intelligence, blockchain, fintech, data analytics, and more. The conference has been occurring for the last 41 years, featuring 7 separate category shows in one event, and attended by over 100,000 industry stakeholders. 4000+ exhibitors, 800+ startups, and 1000+ speakers from 170+ countries will attend this year.

At the event, attendees will be able to get an in-person look at SkyDrive’s flying SD-03 prototype, and will be the first to view the full-scale demonstrator model of the company’s upcoming two-passenger SD-05 vehicle. Notably, SkyDrive plans to use the SD-05 for air taxi services at the World Expo 2025 in Osaka, Kansai, Japan.

SkyDrive’s CEO, Tomohiro Fukuzawa, said: “As one of our strategic markets, we want to ensure the Middle East is aware of our latest developments and progress.”

SkyDrive is backed by Toyota, and has already received acceptance of its type certificate application for the upcoming SD-05 model in Japan— a major milestone that no other flying vehicle developers have reached in the country. According to the company, its goal is to develop a personal flying vehicle that can ‘take off from an land in small spaces like parking lots and helipads atop buildings’, making electric air travel an accessible means of transportation. The company also is developing heavy-lift cargo drones.

Why it’s important: Currently, SkyDrive is at the top of the industry for advanced aerial mobility in Japan. While its current aircraft seats only one passenger, the company has already demonstrated effective manned flight with this prototype, and plans on continuing to develop higher-capacity aircraft. With backing from Toyota and Japan’s ministry of transportation, along with is clear vision to integrate eVTOL travel into daily transportation, the company is well suited to continue advancing to commercialization.

Source // SkyDrive, GITEX Global


Posted by Benji