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Beta Technologies

Bristow Group

Beta Alia-250

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Bristow backs Beta Tech with Alia order
With an order for up to 55 Alia eVTOL aircraft under its belt, Bristow will leverage its 70+ years of aviation expertise in developing AAM ops for passengers and time-sensitive cargo using regional transportation hubs.
Bristow has placed a firm order for five Alia aircraft with an option for up to 50 more.
Read this story in our September 2022 printed issue.

Bristow Group has placed a firm order for five eVTOL Alia-250 aircraft manufactured by electric aviation company Beta Technologies, with an option to purchase an additional 50.

The Alia will have a maximum range of 250 nm and is designed to carry 1,400 lbs of payload or six people, including a pilot. With a 50 ft wingspan and a carbon fibre fuselage, the aircraft uses a single distributed direct-electric propulsion system and has four horizontally mounted rotors that provide vertical lift, with a single propeller in the rear to propel the aircraft forward.

"This order firmly positions Bristow as an early adopter and leader in pragmatically developing AAM operations and ushering in a new era in vertical lift solutions," says executive vice president and chief transformation officer Dave Stepanek. "By leveraging our more than 70 years of expertise as a leader in vertical lift, we plan to use the Beta Alia to safely and reliably move passengers and time-sensitive cargo as part of the development of new regional mobility networks in the US and other strategic locations."

"We designed the Alia with reliability, efficiency and the highest value cargo in mind, all of which are central to the types of critical missions Bristow carries out on a global stage," adds Beta founder and CEO Kyle Clark. "Over the past few months, we've made strides with our flight test programme, proving the aircraft is capable of performing in conditions it will see in service. We are gratified by Bristow's confidence in our continued progress, and we look forward to partnering to provide a safe and sustainable system to transform regional transportation."

The Alia battery will be charged in under an hour using Beta's own charging infrastructure, which can be deployed as a standalone fixture to enable airport operations or integrated into a charging pad for off-airport applications.

This is the latest in a series of next-gen agreements that Bristow has entered over the past 18 months. In July 2022, it agreed to purchase 50 Lilium all-electric jets and provide Part 145 maintenance services for them in Florida and other US and European markets. It also agreed to explore aerial EMS and cargo transportations with Vertical’s VX4 while helping to develop MRO capabilities for the aircraft, and inked its intent for 100 Chaparrals from Elroy Air, to fill increasing demand for the movement of time-sensitive logistics, healthcare and energy cargoes.

In December 2021, the company pre-ordered up to 50 Butterflys for high density, noise sensitive passenger routes. It will also help Overair plan FAA certification and develop a safety operating culture. In September 2021, Bristow signed up with Eve to develop a comprehensive suite of UAM products and services for various regions and missions. And the preceding August it committed to certifying eSTOLs with Electra.

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