Monday, September 26, 2022

FlyBlade to launch electric flying vehicles in India

After scooters and trucks, you will soon be able to fly on electric vehicles. Urban air mobility player FlyBlade India has inked an MoU for a strategic partnership with Embrear’s Eve Air Mobility to bring at least 200 electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOLs) to India by 2026. 

Along with this, both the companies have inked a pact to facilitate infrastructure, service and support, and Eve’s Urban Air Traffic Management (UATM) software solution. The companies also plan to collaborate on a three-month pilot project connecting passengers from various places to the city airport using helicopters. BLADE India, through its leasing partners, will initially underwrite 50,000 hours of Eve’s eVTOL in the country.

eVTOL aircraft is a variety of VTOL aircraft that uses electric power to hover, take off, and land vertically. eVTOLs are designed to pick up passengers from rooftops of their apartment blocks to ferry them across the city to their respective offices or entertainment centres. The speciality of these aircraft are that these have close to zero carbon emission. They are also cost effective, and economical, according to the Brazillian planemaker. 

Earlier this month, United Airlines too invested $15 million in Eve Air Mobility, a subsidiary of Embraer, and a conditional purchase agreement for 200 four-seat electric aircraft along with 200 options.

AndrĂ© Stein, co-CEO of Eve, who was in India to meet officials of the Ministry of Civil Aviation (MoCA) told businessline that he sees a great opportunity in India for this segment to flourish. “It’s a great pleasure, and we see great possibility to not only understand the problem and find a solution but to also build an ecosystem. We think India has a great potential.”

The Indian Civil Aviation Minister, Jyotiraditya Scindia — back from his tour to the US and Canada — made a strong pitch to bring eVTOLs to India. He said he had asked the US-based start-up Beta Technologies to explore the Indian market to launch eVTOLs.

26/09/22 Forum Gandhi/Business Line

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