Proof of Concept
Vertical Aerospace Ltd.
On Sept. 10, 2018, the Bristol, UK-based startup, Vertical Aerospace, Ltd., announced it had built and flown the UK's first full-scale fully-electric Vertical Take-Off and Landing (VTOL) aircraft. Its unmanned technology demonstrator aircraft weighs 1,650 lb (750 kg) and first flew June 6, 2018 at Cotswold Airport in Kemble, Gloucestershire — about 100 miles (160 km) west of London. As of the unveiling, the aircraft had flown a dozen times. Their proof of concept aircraft (no picture available) first flew indoors on Aug. 25, 2017 at Cotswold Airport in Kemble, Gloucestershire.
The company was founded in 2016 by CEO Stephen Fitzpatrick, founder and CEO of London-based OVO Energy. In early September, Vertical Aerospace said it had 28 aerospace engineers and “experts from technologically advanced sectors such as Formula 1, Energy and Defense,” Employees had come from Airbus, Boeing, Rolls-Royce, Martin Jetpack and GE Aviation with “extensive experience” in building certificated commercial aircraft. In a statement, Fitzpatrick also revealed that “We've learned a lot from Formula 1, both in terms of technology and pace of development. The lightweight materials, aerodynamics and electrical systems developed through F1 are highly applicable to aircraft, much more so than to road transport.”
According to the company, "Vertical Aerospace is building technology to revolutionize how people fly, with the ultimate aim of making intercity air travel personal, on-demand and carbon free." Following the flight of this aircraft, the company began development of the Seraph.
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- Article: Energy Company CEO Leads Successful U.K. Test of Flying Taxi, Bloomberg, Sept. 9, 2018
- Article: Bristol start-up launches UK's first electric 'flying taxi', The Telegraph, Sept. 10, 2018
- Article: All hail Vertical Aerospace’s electric flying taxi, The Times, Sept. 10, 2018
- Article: Vertical Aerospace flies eVTOL demonstrator, Flight Global, Sept. 10, 2018
- Article: Vertical Aerospace Opens Up, Vertiflite, Jan/Feb 2019
- Article: Vertical Aerospace Flies Seraph, evtol.news, Nov. 4, 2019