Pipistrel Vertical Solutions
Pipistrel is a Slovenian light aircraft manufacturer founded in 1989. Pipistrel originally began manufacturing powered hang gliders which were discontinued in the early 2000s. In 2007, Pipistrel introduced the world's first 100% electric powered two seat glider; the first of their gliders to achieve production. In 2015, Pipistrel developed the Alapha Electro, an all-electric plane or electric Conventional Take-Off and Landing (eCTOL) aircraft for training with a one hour flight duration with an energy reserve.
Pipistrel publicly announced at the first Uber Elevate Summit in April 2017 (Dallas, Texas, USA), that they were working on an eVTOL aircraft, but revealed no information. At the second Elevate Summit on May 8 (Los Angeles, California, USA), the company revealed they were working on several different versions of its eVTOL concept: "The new aircraft utilizes dedicated propulsion systems for both cruising and vertical lift and embraces an aircraft family approach of eVTOL able to carry from two to six passengers." The company has started a new subsidiary, Pipistrel Vertical Solutions, for its eVTOL development efforts.
Pipistrel won the NASA Green Flight Challenges three times and was the first company to have an electric airplane (eCTOL), the Alpha Electro, approved by the aviation safety regulators in Australia, Canada and the US (FAA), in April 2018. Pipistrel is also developing the Cargo Drone after shifting resources from their 801 UAM VTOL.
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- Video: Jeff Holden announces Pipistrel, Uber Elevate Summit, Apr. 2017
- Video: Pipistrel General Manager Ivo Boscarol, Uber Elevate Summit, Apr. 2017
- Video: Dr. Tine Tomažič, Director of R&D Institute at Pipistrel, Uber Elevate Summit, Apr. 2017
- Article: Uber partners with Pipistrel Aircraft to manufacture electric VTOLs, Pipistrel, April 25, 2017
- Article: Uber Partners with Pipistrel Aircraft to Manufacture Electric VTOLs, Uber, Apr. 25, 2017
- Article: Pipistrel reveals new eVTOL concept, Uber, May 2018
- Article: Three New eVTOLS Unveiled at Uber Elevate, Aviation International News Online, May 9, 2018
- Article: Uber Unveils Its Flying Car Prototype, Engineering.com, May 22, 2018
- Article: Pipistrel eVTOL News, eVTOL News, Feb. 23, 2019
- Article: Pipistrel shifts attention from eVTOL air taxi to low-cost cargo drone, eVTOL Magazine, Nov. 26, 2019
- Article: Pipistrel Committed to Uber Despite Shifting Priorities, eVTOL News, June 12, 2020