At the beginning of October this year, Germany-based eVTOL developer Volocopter took part in the Osaka Roundtable, an institution eager to bring UAM to one of the busiest cities in Asia. The company also committed to fly during the Expo 2025 Osaka Kansai and plans to conduct public test flights in Japan as early as 2023.
With nine million residents, Osaka Prefecture has one of the largest industrial bay areas in Asia, including several international seaports and airports within its vicinity, which makes it an ideal location to test over land, water and city conditions.
Volocopter CEO Florian Reuter says: “We are honoured to be seated at the Osaka Roundtable and to take flight at an important milestone of the Expo 2025 Osaka Kansai. Japan’s and Osaka’s commitment to UAM commercialisation and its open approach allows us to be involved in pioneering them into the future of mobility. As the world’s first and only eVTOL developer with successful public flights in several continents and a family of multi-functional aircraft, we are confident that we will become an integral part of Japan’s future UAM ecosystem. Together with our partners, we aim to improve lives in densely populated areas with our sustainable UAM services.”
The company is joining forces with local partners and regulators early in the commercialisation process to strengthen its position within the market. Recently, Japan Airlines reserved 100 VoloDrone and VoloCity aircraft units for its future use. Additionally, Volocopter has started direct communications with local government offices to discuss how its products can support the local ecosystem in disaster relief or aid regeneration of industrial and suburban locations through air bridges.
Since 2018, Japan has been proactively shaping its future of air mobility and set an ambitious target to achieve full commercialisation of eVTOL air taxi and heavy lift cargo drone business by 2030. Japan boasts a comprehensive roadmap for UAM businesses to achieve these goals on a national level.
Volocopter has also committed to air taxi services in Singapore within the next three years and is to deliver 150 vehicles to China’s Geely within the next five years.
Volocopter holds Design Organisation Approval and Production Organisation Approval from EASA. Once certified for commercial launch in Europe, the company is positioned for concurrent type certification approvals in the US from the FAA and the civil aviation authority in Singapore.