German UAM company Volocopter has partnered with Los Angeles-based Urban Movement Labs (UML) to explore the application of Volocopter's UAM solutions in the Los Angeles area. As part of Volocopter's US campaign, the company will also be present at CoMotion LA from 16-18 November 2021 for the public to learn more about this new mode of urban transportation.
UAM is a subcategory of advanced air mobility (AAM) that focuses on how advanced aircraft operate in and around cities. Today, Volocopter is developing its eVTOL aircraft to provide commercial transportation services for passengers and goods that are 100 per cent electric and emission-free in flight. This mobility service will be positioned to support existing transport options, introduce new local employment opportunities and provide point-to-point connections at costs similar to taxi fares.
“Our partnership with Urban Movement Labs is a great entryway into the US with our innovative UAM services,” says Christian Bauer, Volocopter CCO. “By leading the conversation about urban air mobility with broad stakeholders in Los Angeles, Volocopter can strategically identify and address how our services can benefit cities in the country. More importantly, we are also gaining real insights into living transportation ecosystems in the US to build the best complimentary service to other modes of transportation for our future passengers.”
“Volocopter is one of the promising urban air mobility options for adding new layers of connectivity and travel options for Angelenos,” adds Clint Harper, urban air mobility fellow with Urban Movement Labs. “Its partnership with Urban Movement Labs shows that it is interested in learning how it can improve the mobility experience of Angelenos through a shared vision. Partnerships like this are an important step in launching this innovative industry with community in mind. We are excited to share this journey with UAM trailblazers like Volocopter.”
UML executive director Sam Morrissey explains: “We are executing a community-first strategy to engage with community-based organisations and inform a policy framework that will guide the development of UAM infrastructure in the City of Los Angeles. Through our partnership with Volocopter we can explore specific pilot projects to advance a future UAM network that reflects what we hear from Angelenos and establishes standards for future UAM operation.”
Volocopter's family of aircraft for UAM services includes the VoloCity air taxi for short intracity routes, the VoloDrone for heavy-lift goods transport and the VoloConnect for longer routes between suburban communities and downtown. The company is also developing physical and digital infrastructures (VoloPort and VoloIQ) to complement its multipurpose aircraft portfolio and create scalable urban air mobility ecosystems in cities. Volocopter will launch its UAM services in the next two to three years after achieving final certification from EASA. Concurrent certification from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) will allow Volocopter to bring its services to the US shortly after.
The partnership between Volocopter and Urban Movement Labs will provide lessons to inform a policy framework that envisions UAM as a safe, sustainable and equitable multi-modal transportation component in Los Angeles.
As the only eVTOL industrial player to hold two strategic EASA certification approvals to design and produce aircraft in-house, Volocopter brings leadership in certification, 10 years of experience, and over 1,000 test flights to the table. The company most recently demonstrated its progress at the EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, where Volocopter conducted the first public flight of a crewed eVTOL in the US.