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Business Air News Bulletin
Business Air News Bulletin
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Volocopter receives green light for VoloCity serial production
Volocopter's production facility has the trust of, and stamp of approval from, Germany's LBA to manufacture commercial aircraft that can be delivered to customers post-type certification. It also now has ATO approval.
Volocopter has proved it can produce safe and high-quality test aircraft, and now looks forward to shortening the production lead time for scaling.
Read this story in our April 2024 printed issue.

Volocopter has received the German Federal Aviation Office's (Luftfahrtbundesamt or LBA) Production Organisation Approval (POA) extension that allows the production of its VoloCity aircraft. This POA extension applies to the two new Volocopter production and hangar facilities in Bruchsal, Germany, that were first unveiled in April 2023.

Volocopter holds both Design Organisation Approval and POA; EASA's DOA was granted in 2019, followed by the initial POA in 2021 with the acquisition of DG Flugzeugbau. This POA extension is industry-first, which lists specifically the approved production of an eVTOL in the POA's scope of work, from prototyping to serial manufacturing. This means Volocopter now has the full trust and authority to design and produce the VoloCity in-house autonomously and has entered the pre-serial production stage of manufacturing.

COO Andreas Fehring says: "This is a major milestone for us. Aircraft design and production are strongly regulated for a good reason: to produce safe mobility products. I am pleased that Volocopter's production facility has the trust of, and stamp of approval from, LBA to manufacture commercial aircraft that can be delivered to customers once the VoloCity receives type certification. Our team has proved that we can produce safe and high-quality test aircraft, and we now look forward to shortening our production lead time for scaling."

Under EASA's SC-VTOL (Special Condition VTOL) enhanced certification category, the VoloCity will be able to fly above congested urban areas quietly and efficiently, adding an extra layer of alternative mobility to the transportation mix in cities.

The OEM is now also an LBA-Approved Training Organisation through its Volocopter Air Services subsidiary, allowing it to train pilots for its future products. The company is the first eVTOL aircraft developer to receive ATO.

The approval was handed over with zero findings in the final audit. Over the past year the LBA rigorously checked if the company adheres to the strict rules and standards required to produce training materials for the aircraft/simulators that the training will be delivered on.

As part of the approval, Volocopter will now work on the transition to finalise the training programme for its aircraft. It has kicked off the approval of the programme in preparation for commercial launch of electric air taxis later this year, implementing the newly published EASA regulations applicable to the operation and pilot licensing of this new category of electric air taxi.

Oliver Reinhardt, chief risk and certification officer, says: "This is another substantial milestone on the way to bring electric air taxis to cities around the world. It bears witness to the robust aviation company Volocopter has become over the past decade and how diligent and professional our entire team works."

Being awarded ATO is an important puzzle piece in the journey towards receiving the AOC, which will allow the company to operate electric air taxis once type certification is received later this year.

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