Boeing autonomous passenger air vehicle completes first flight
Autonomous Vehicle Technology announces 2020 ACES Award Winner in Mobility Services | Urban Air Mobility category
Boeing went big in 2019 on urban air mobility (UAM). It kicked off the year with a successful first test flight of its autonomous passenger air vehicle (PAV) prototype. Boeing NeXt, which leads the company’s urban air mobility efforts, used Boeing subsidiary Aurora Flight Sciences to design and develop the electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft and will continue testing. Powered by an electric propulsion system, the PAV prototype is designed for fully autonomous flight from takeoff to landing, with a range of up to 50 mi (80.47 km). In addition to the PAV, the Boeing NeXt portfolio includes an unmanned, fully electric cargo air vehicle (CAV) designed to transport up to 500 lb (226.80 kg) and other urban, regional, and global mobility platforms. In June, Boeing and Kitty Hawk Corp. announced a strategic partnership to collaborate on future efforts to advance safe urban air mobility. One of the more interesting Boeing announcements was with Porsche to explore the premium urban air mobility market and the extension of urban traffic into the airspace. Porsche is looking to enhance its scope as a sports car manufacturer by becoming a leading brand for premium mobility, which could mean moving into the “third dimension of travel.” The companies will create a team to address various aspects of urban air mobility, including analysis of the market potential for premium vehicles and possible use cases. Boeing, Porsche, and Aurora Flight Sciences are also developing a concept for a fully electric vertical takeoff and landing vehicle (shown). The market for urban air mobility is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 26% between 2023 and 2035 to reach almost $87 billion by 2035, according to research by BIS Research.
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