Geely invests €50M in Volocopter air taxis
The German airport taxi start-up Volocopter has secured 50 million euros in a new financing round led by the Chinese Geely Group. The new funds will be used to bring Volocopter’s electric aircraft to commercial launch within the next three years.
EASA releases new electric aircraft regulations
The European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has adopted a framework plan for battery electric and hybrid electric vertical take-off aircraft in Europe: With the “Special Condition”, the designers now have the first specifications for this group of aircraft.
Electric aircraft by H55 takes off for 90 minutes
The Swiss electric aircraft startup H55 by solar pioneer André Borschberg has completed its maiden flight. Manufactured by BRM Aero and powered by the H55 propulsion system, the Bristell Energic is an all-electric aircraft with two seats for pilot training that can stay in the air for 90 minutes.
Melbourne to pilot Uber Air’s flying taxis
Uber has selected Australia as the first “international market” for its planned e-flight taxi service Uber Air. Melbourne be the third city to pilot the program following Dallas and Los Angeles. Test flights are scheduled to start next year and commercial operations from 2023.
Amazon’s new delivery drone (video)
Amazon has just demonstrated its newest fully electric delivery drone at the re:Mars conference in Las Vegas. The drone is to fly up to 25 kilometres and be able to deliver parcels weighing up to 2.3 kilograms within 30 minutes. Amazon did not specify where the “Prime Air” service would start.
Alaka’i presents fuel cell air taxi
The US startup Alaka’i Technologies has presented the concept of a fuel cell air taxi called Skai, which was developed together with the BMW brand Designworks. It offers space for five passengers, is powered by six electric motors and is expected to have a range of around 400 miles (640 km).
China: DHL launches drone delivery service
DHL Express and drone manufacturer EHang have entered into a strategic partnership to develop a fully automated drone delivery solution for China’s metropolitan areas. The cooperation has already started with a maiden flight at the EHang Command and Control Center in Guangzhou.
UK: Airship Airlander 10 to receive electric motor
The UK Aerospace Research and Technology Programme is awarding a grant of more than £1 million (around €1.16 million) to Hybrid Air Vehicles, Collins Aerospace and the University of Nottingham. The partners will develop a novel all-electric propulsor for the Airlander 10 zeppelin.