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Business Air News Bulletin
Business Air News Bulletin
The monthly news publication for aviation professionals.
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Eve Urban Air Mobility Solutions, Inc.

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Eve advances eVTOL testing and UATM development
The company is making strides toward maturing critical aircraft technologies and has completed development of its Urban Air Traffic Management prototype. It's currently on schedule for a 2026 launch.
Testing the vertical lift rotors aboard a custom truck-mounted platform will enable Eve to evaluate the performance of rotors during the transition phase of flight.

Eve Air Mobility is continuing to advance its eVTOL testing phase as it continues to make strides toward key programme milestones. The various tests performed throughout this phase are part of Eve's building blocks approach to further enhance the maturity of both its technology and eVTOL to deliver the best product to the market.

“We are very pleased with our programme development activities to date and are making very good progress as we move toward the selection of primary suppliers and finalise the definition of our aircraft systems architecture,” says vice president of programme management and operation Alice Altissimo. “We continue to invest, and our team is working hard with the goal of developing a mature aircraft for certification and entry into service in 2026.”

Eve has completed propeller tests on its propeller rig in Brazil in order to measure aerodynamic performance and sound properties for modelling and development. The number and the overall characteristics of blades (torsion, shape, etc) are critical in defining the vibration, load and sound profile, as well as energy requirements of the eVTOL. Eve engineers tested multiple models to improve efficiency and reduce sound footprint and operating costs.

The company also recently began testing its vertical lift rotors aboard a new custom truck-mounted platform. The mobile testbed was designed specifically to evaluate the performance of rotors during the transition phase of flight. Eve's engineering team has already begun testing and gathering data on the aerodynamic characteristics of rotors in forward flight. The eVTOL features a lift+cruise configuration with dedicated rotors for vertical flight and fixed wings to fly on cruise, with no components required to change position during flight. This configuration favours safety, efficiency, reliability and certifiability while also reducing the cost of operation and additional maintenance, repair and overhaul costs.

The results from the company's recently completed wind-tunnel tests, along with the findings from the propeller and truck-mounted rig, are being used to increase the fidelity of the company's flight simulator and fly-by-wire system. Eve is also utilising learnings from ongoing enhanced computational fluid dynamics (CFD) calculations to mature the analysis of the transition between the hover and cruise phases of the flight, among other tools.

Eve expects to conclude the selection of main equipment suppliers in the first half of 2023 and start the assembly of its first full-scale eVTOL prototype during the second half of 2023, followed by the test campaign in 2024. Eve's eVTOL is scheduled to be certified and enter service in 2026.

The company has also completed its Urban Air Traffic Management (Urban ATM) prototype, which focuses on concepts and services essential to supporting the introduction and scalability of urban air mobility (UAM) operations. It is now initiating the commercial product development of Urban ATM solutions to ensure UAM's airspace integration is successful.

The Urban ATM prototype was initially tested during Eve's Chicago Simulation Experience last autumn to support the validation of foundational Urban ATM concepts and the integration of UAM into the ecosystem. The simulation, which used helicopters as a substitute for eVTOLs, performed tests of Urban ATM technology in combination with simulating ground services, infrastructure and equipment requirements, and vehicle and passenger journeys. This provided essential feedback to advance the development of its commercial Urban ATM solutions through which customers will be able to enjoy tailored traffic management services and achieve efficient operations and resource optimisations.

“Advanced air mobility has the potential to unlock significant new transportation options and economic opportunities for society. Eve recognises that these developments need to be reviewed for safety and unification with the current airspace ecosystem to avoid potential logistical challenges,” says co-CEO Andre Stein. “By offering comprehensive solutions, our Urban ATM technology will provide critical traffic management services that will be essential to address these concerns. Eve's Urban ATM will play a key role in enabling the global UAM market to scale and has a customer-centric design to address future operations' pain points.”

Eve is engaging with Atech, Embraer's air traffic control technology and system integrator company, to support the development of the Urban ATM software solution through Atech's experience in developing aviation-grade products from the ATM systems in Brazil. To enable product adoption, Eve is leveraging partnerships with key organisations to share knowledge and multiple strengths that will empower stakeholders. Thus far these include Halo Aviation, Blade India, Skyway, Bluenest, Volatus and Ferrovial. Eve has been conducting advisory groups with these partners to ensure that its software development aligns with their needs and will maximise the potential value of Urban ATM to their operations.

The company is also continuing to collaborate with regulators, air navigation service providers, fleet operators, vertiport developers, airports and other UAM ecosystems stakeholders across the Americas, Europe and Asia Pacific to advance concepts and begin developing technology to support the initial operation and scaling of UAM operations from an ATM perspective.

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