News

  • NASA Crown NEXA UAM market study

    NASA Releases Two UAM Consultant Reports

    In 2017, NASA hired two teams of consultants to study the viability of different urban air mobility (UAM) use cases.

    On November 6, 2018, NASA’s Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate (ARMD) released highlights of the two in-depth UAM reports to the public, with more content scheduled for release in late November.

    Both reports explore many of the complex opportunities and challenges that NASA expects to address with industry, government and academic partners in its Urban Air...

  • Astro’s Elroy Blasts Off

    Astro's Elroy Blasts Off
    The exclusive story of the origins and progress of the PassengerDrone

    By Kenneth I. Swartz
    Vertiflite Nov/Dec 2018

    Astro Aerospace holds the distinction of being one of a handful of electric aircraft developers in the world to have successfully flown a piloted electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft. (More...

  • NASA Urban Air Mobility vision

    NASA Launches Urban Air Mobility Grand Challenge

    On Nov. 1-2, more than 240 representatives from government, industry and academia gathered in Seattle, Washington, to attend an industry day marking the launch of NASA’s Urban Air Mobility Grand Challenge plan.

    Over the next few years, NASA will host a series of operational demonstration programs that will address known UAM challenges that will allow participants to learn from each other and collectively “raise the water level” together, explained Dr. Jaiwon Shin, NASA Associate...

  • Bell AirTaxi at Heli-Expo 2018 (Ian Frain photo)

    Bell Furthers Multiple eVTOL Efforts

    Bell announced on Oct. 2 that it had signed teaming agreement with Garmin International, Inc. on the development and integration of the autonomous vehicle management computer (VMC) systems to support the company's eVTOL on-demand mobility aircraft, the Bell Air Taxi. As noted previously, Safran will provide the hybrid-electric propulsion system for Bell’s VTOL aircraft.

    Bell president and CEO Mitch Snyder also echoed previous statements that the reduced noise signature of eVTOL aircraft...

  • EASA Logo

    EASA Proposes Special Rules for eVTOL

    On Oct. 15, 2018, the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) issued a public notice of its proposal of airworthiness standards to “enable the certification of small vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) aircraft. This is to develop the first component of the regulatory framework to enable the safe operation of air taxi and electric VTOL (eVTOL) aircraft in Europe.”

    The new standards will apply to person-carrying VTOL aircraft. In its initial version, the requirement will be limited to...

  • Kitty Hawk Cora (yellow in NZ)

    Air New Zealand Partners with Zephyr Airworks

    Air New Zealand and Zephyr Airworks announced on Oct. 16 that they had signed an agreement to work collaboratively on bringing the world's first autonomous electric air taxi service to market in New Zealand. Zephyr Airworks is the operating company in New Zealand for Kitty Hawk’s Cora eVTOL.

    The agreement between the national carrier and the operator of Cora, the world's first autonomous electric air taxi, signals the intention to form a long-term relationship “to make autonomous,...

  • 1st Manned VC200 flight

    Volocopter to Fly in Singapore

    Volocopter announced on Oct. 18, 2018, that it would be testing its eVTOL (whether the VC200 or 2X was not revealed) in Singapore next year. The flight tests are designed to verify the ability of Volocopter’s eVTOL vehicles to operate in Singapore’s urban environment.

    The tests will take place in the second half of 2019, supported by Singapore’s Ministry of Transport, Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS), and Economic Development Board. Volocopter and CAAS will work together...

  • HoverSurf March 2018

    FAA Confirms Hoversurf S3 is Ultralight

    A third eVTOL has been acknowledged by the FAA as a Part 103 ultralight, according to a Hoversurf news release on Sept. 28, 2018: "HOVERSURF has met FAA part 103 guidelines for a personal Vertical Take - Off and Landing aircraft." (Originally this was posted as "Hoversurf just became an approved personal Vertical...

  • RPI MOVE ribbon cutting 2018: (L-R): Dr. Shekhar Garde, Honorable Dr. Shirley Ann Jackson and Prof. Farhan Gandhi

    RPI MOVE Videos/Lectures Posted

    The opening of the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI) Center for Mobility with Vertical Lift (MOVE) was held on Oct. 2-3, 2018, at the university, located in Troy, New York: http://move.rpi.edu

    Fueled by explosive growth in the emergent field of electric VTOL aircraft, as well as the U.S. DoD’s interest in high-speed VTOL aircraft, vertical lift technology is undergoing a major renaissance and is at one of the most exciting points in its development history....

  • Congressional Hearing on “Airspace Integration of New Aircraft”

    The US House of Representatives’ Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure held a hearing of the Subcommittee on Aviation on “Airspace Integration of New Aircraft” on Sept. 6.

    Hearing Background Memo

    Witness List:

    • Shelley Yak, Director, FAA Technical Center | Written Testimony
    • Jay Merkel, Deputy Vice President, Program Management, FAA Air Traffic Organization (accompanying Shelley Yak)
    • Tom Prevot, Director of...