Urban air mobility (UAM) pioneer Volocopter flew at the Experimental Aircraft Association's (EAA) AirVenture 2021 in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. The Volocopter 2X flight was the first public crewed test flight of a fully electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) air taxi in the U.S. This successful flight marks a key milestone in Volocopter's plan to raise awareness of air taxis among populations around the globe and is critical to the long-term success of delivering advanced air mobility (AAM) and urban air mobility (UAM) solutions. The term AAM covers aviation transportation for people and goods with highly automated aircraft, while UAM focuses specifically on how these advanced aircraft can thrive in and around cities.
The crewed Volocopter 2X took off for a 4-minute flight at appproximately160ft and a top speed of 18mph over Wittman Regional Airport as part of EAA's AirVenture aviation celebration. Event attendees were able to watch the Volocopter 2X fly and sit in the VoloCity model at Volocopter's booth to experience these aircraft.
"Volocopter successfully conducting the first public manned test flight of an eVTOL company in the U.S. is a milestone for the industry and a reminder that our commercial launch is fast approaching. We can talk about our lead in certification, low noise emissions, and global partnerships all we want, but nothing shows just how close we are to launch UAM as a service as does flying an air taxi in front of crowds and inviting people to sit in our aircraft. Air taxis are coming, and we are working to bring electric flights to cities around the globe in the next two to three years," says Florian Reuter, Volocopter CEO.
"Oshkosh is a haven for enthusiasts and experts to embrace the pioneering spirit of aviation, and today's Volocopter flight is one for the history books. This is the spirit of Oshkosh giving our visitors the chance to experience real pioneers, who will change aviation for good, right here," says Rick Larsen, EAA vice president of Communities and Member Programming.
Volocopter is developing a family of electric aircraft for passengers and goods. This aircraft family includes aircraft for both long and short distances within cities and beyond (VoloCity and VoloConnect air taxis and VoloDrone heavy-lift drone). Volocopter's holistic approach to launching UAM services entails partnering with global industry leaders to offer the whole operating UAM ecosystem, including infrastructure and the digital backbone (VoloPort and VoloIQ) to integrate services into existing transport systems in cities.
Volocopter is the first eVTOL developer to hold two strategic certification approvals from the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) – Design Organization Approval and Production Organization Approval – to design and produce aircraft in-house. Once certified for commercial launch in Europe, Volocopter is positioned for concurrent type certification approvals in the U.S. from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), having applied earlier this year, and the civil aviation authority in Singapore (CAAS). The company has ten years of experience, over 1,000 test flights, and a track record of public flights in Paris (2021), Singapore (2019), Helsinki (2019), Dubai (2017).