Volocopter, the German air taxi start-up and “Pioneer of Urban Air Mobility (UAM),” announced that the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has positively accepted their application for concurrent Type Certificate validation on 22 December 2020. This sets the basis for Volocopter to bring their electric air taxi services to the American market. Volocopter is the first and only electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) company in the world with Design Organization Approval (DOA), the license to develop and build certified aircraft, from the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA). The company is currently in the process of receiving EASA Type Certification for their VoloCity aircraft. Volocopter is seeking FAA approval to enter the U.S. market concurrently with its EASA type certificate to accelerate its worldwide expansion.
Volocopter boasts ten years of full-scale aircraft testing experience, substantial international partnerships and investors, and an electric air taxi design fit for intra-city transport and certification. Through long-standing, fruitful relationships with cities like Singapore, Paris, and Dubai, Volocopter has already demonstrated their expertise in electric flight for inner-city mobility. Compared to other eVTOL players in the UAM industry, Volocopter is focused on promoting seamless, 100% electric mobility within congested cities.
“We are the ‘Pioneer of Urban Air Mobility’ and our accomplishments are setting the stage for more extensive adoption of UAM implementation by our industry. By focusing on a collaborative approach to success, we are bringing excellence, expertise, and experience to the table together with our partners, and with that, we are leading the way to bring urban air mobility to life in cities around the globe,” said Florian Reuter, CEO of Volocopter. “From the beginning, we have considered the U.S. an important market for our services. Certification is the key to this market, and we are excited to begin the process of seeking approval from the FAA to introduce this innovative era of mobility not only in Europe and Asia but also in the U.S.”
The VoloCity, Volocopter’s electric air taxi, is designed to meet the highest aircraft safety standards and features the lowest noise development in the industry. Volocopter developed the VoloCity specifically to meet growing demand for better intra-city mobility in large cities like Los Angeles, New York City, San Francisco, and Washington D.C. among others. These air taxi services would promote local job opportunities, save people time, and reduce costs associated with spending hours in traffic by simply flying over it. Furthermore, Volocopter’s business plan aims to provide scalable air taxi services at costs comparable to regular taxi services.
Volocopter is currently working with EASA on certification for commercial launch planned in the next 2-3 years. When Volocopter receives type certification approval from EASA, immediately followed by the FAA validation in this timeframe, they will be positioned to enter the electric air taxi market first and pave the way for the UAM industry to expand services globally.
By offering concurrent type certificate validation, the FAA gives aircraft manufacturers like Volocopter the opportunity to show that they are fulfilling the necessary requirements parallel to being certified by the primary authority of the company’s current jurisdiction, e.g., EASA. This format promotes open communication about certification and safety qualifications internationally for aircraft like the VoloCity.
Volocopter is stepping into the spotlight to lead the UAM industry towards commercial electric air taxi services by orchestrating a complete UAM ecosystem with their innovative backend – the digital operating system VoloIQ, an open API platform for the UAM industry. This will benefit the entire industry with:
- optimal passenger experience,
- highest level of operational safety,
- partner integration for logistics, infrastructure, and suppliers,
- and productive regulator and city collaboration for implementing these services.
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