Wisk and Skyports Join Forces for Autonomous Air Taxi Operations in the U.S.

Over the past couple of years, the UAM (urban air mobility) sector focused mainly on the development of solid, reliable technologies for eVTOLs (electric vertical take-off and landing). Now, it’s time to go to the next level by focusing more on the future infrastructure and the entire UAM ecosystem.
Wisk is betting on autonomous eVTOL operations for future urban mobility 7 photos
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Two important names linked to advanced air mobility (AAM) have joined forces for what is now a premiere in the U.S. Wisk and Skyports have released the first-of-its-kind Concept of Operations for the integration of autonomous eVTOLs with vertiports. This document also marks the first collaboration of a vertiport developer and operator and an eVTOL manufacturer in the U.S.

All types of air taxi prototypes were paraded in front of us over the past years, intriguing us with their innovative design and cutting-edge technology. But the behind-the-scenes work is equally important if we want to be able to fly in these vehicles for real, and this includes the development of dedicated vertiports. The initial phase of AAM services will rely on piloted vehicles, but it will then make way for the introduction of regular autonomous flights.

The two partners are focusing on these future operations. They evaluated multiple factors, from ground operations management and navigational support to passenger accommodation and schedule management. Based on that, the Concept of Operations identified the upgrades, retrofits, and procedure changes that are required for regular self-flying air taxi operations.

Even though piloted air taxis will be the first to launch, the dedicated infrastructure must be developed with autonomous eVTOLs in mind. “It’s important that infrastructure built today can accommodate the aircraft of tomorrow,” said Duncan Walker, CEO of Skyports.

Based in San Francisco and New Zealand, Wisk claims to be the first one in the U.S. to have developed an all-electric, self-flying air taxi. It conducted a pioneering flight in 2017 and is now backed by Boeing, which confirms its path of success.

press release

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