Urban mobility has made its first big step into utilising air space for city travel. Last week, the Fiumcino Airport near Rome managed to test fly the first manned electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) in a 5-minute flight. The vehicle will provide air taxi services for two passengers and hopes to be running by 2024. This test flight was conducted with a pilot and no passengers using a Volocopter eVTOL vehicle.
The flight path envisaged for this air taxi service is to connect passengers from the city to the airport, covering the distance in 20 minutes in comparison to the hour-long journey required by car. Future innovations could see the flight becoming automated. The service offers an emissions free journey between the airport and the city, avoiding a highly trafficked route.
The test flight cements Italy at the forefront of urban air mobility. The flight came a year after the Volocopter prototype was first unveiled in a demonstration in Italy. The continued development of the project will aim to provide urban air mobility access to residents and become the first step towards an air urban mobility network. The project is estimated to provide a €4.2 billion market by 2030 and provide approximately 90,000 jobs, according to studies by EASA and the McKinsey Centre for Future Mobility.
The original article was posted on the Cities Today website.
Photo Credit: © Shoaib_Mughal / Shutterstock.com - no permission to re-use image(s) without separate licence from Shutterstock.