Joby Aviation has acquired Austria-based radar system designer Inras, a move that embodies the company's strategy of maintaining leadership in key advanced technologies by seeking out proven leaders in their field, wherever they are in the world. The transaction will see the team remain in Linz, a growing hotbed for RF-related commercial and research activity, with additional resources.
“We have been continually impressed with Inras since we began working with it to develop custom radar systems for our aircraft,” says founder and CEO JoeBen Bevirt. “It is a leader in solving the challenges associated with airborne sensing and autonomy, and we are excited to welcome it to Joby as we move toward integrating more advanced detection capabilities in the future.”
Co-founded by Andreas Haderer and Andreas Stelzer, the five person Inras team brings academic and commercial leadership in the design of radiofrequency (RF) systems, processing boards, real-time signal processing and advanced radar sensors. Stelzer is chair of Johannes Kepler University's RF-systems department, where he has been a professor since 2011.
“We look forward to integrating our advanced sensing technology into Joby's electric air taxi. The technology we have developed will improve the aircraft's onboard detection and navigation capabilities in preparation for scaled operations,” says Stelzer. “As we grow our team here in Linz, we're thrilled to further develop RF systems that are foundational to the future of sustainable aviation.”
With a maximum range of 150 miles recently demonstrated during flight testing, and a top speed of 200 mph, Joby's all-electric aircraft is designed to carry four passengers and a pilot with zero operating emissions. The company began flying full-scale prototypes in 2017 and has completed more than 1,000 flight tests. It aims to launch passenger service in 2024.