Volocopter, a German aircraft maker, has unveiled its newest aircraft, VoloConnect, at EBACE Connect. This electric vertical take-off and landing aircraft (eVTOL) differs from its existing offerings in that it is aimed at connecting suburbs to cities, rather than providing transport within a city.
VoloConnect’s distinctive hybrid lift and push design is expected to achieve certification within the next 5 years. According to the company, Volocopter is the only eVTOL developer with a product portfolio of multicopter and fixed-wing designs that can be used for passenger and cargo transportation.
VoloConnect is designed to increase Volocopter’s total addressable urban air mobility (UAM) market while preserving the company’s standard of sustainable, safe urban flight. It uses a hybrid lift and push design to transport up to four passengers electrically on routes of 100 km at a speed of 180 km/h, with a top speed of 250 km/h, according to Volocopter.
The aircraft has a compact layout, which is necessary for urban missions, is naturally stable and highly efficient during forward flight while maintaining a low stall speed. Volocopter’s Munich-based team of experts, led by Chief Engineer Sebastian Mores, has been working on the aircraft for over two years and filed several patents for its technology. They are already flying multiple scaled prototypes of VoloConnect and are quickly progressing towards testing full scale prototypes.
Urban air mobility
Volocopter takes a holistic approach to UAM by developing a full ecosystem that connects the necessary components to offer electric flight in cities. This includes partnerships with global leaders such as Aéroports de Paris, Microsoft Azure, Lufthansa Industry Solutions, and many more.
“VoloConnect embodies the next dimension of our mission to offer affordable, efficient, and sustainable flight mobility solutions for cities around the globe. Leveraging customer insights from our existing VoloCity and VoloDrone, VoloConnect’s capacity to support longer missions and higher payloads serves another strong growing market demand,” said Florian Reuter, Volocopter CEO.
Volocopter is the first and only eVTOL company thus far to attain Design Organisation Approval from European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA), the regulator with the highest safety standards for aircraft certification in the world.