Volocopter, a German aviation start-up specializing in air taxis, will be conducting trials in Singapore in the second half of 2019. Daimler was one of the companies that funded Volocopter back in 2017, providing 25 million euros to the start-up, for an 11% stake.
The German start-up made this announcement at the Autonomy - the Summit of Urban Mobility in Paris last Thursday.
According to Volocopter, the trials are aimed at determining if their Electrical Vertical Take-Off and Landing (eVTOL) vehicles can operate in Singapore.
As the name suggests, the Volocopters are able to take off and land vertically and are designed based on drone technology. Each Volocopter can fly two people up to a 30 km distance.
These Velocopter can be operated with different levels of autonomy - either fully-autonomous with a pilot controlling the joystick or remote-controlled from the ground.
In Singapore, the trial flights are supported by the Ministry of Transport (MoT), the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS), and the Economic Development Board (EDB).
The trials in Singapore will evaluate the feasibility of air taxi routes in Singapore and the implementation of an air traffic management system. In addition to that, Volocopter also said that the trials would need to consider Singapore’s humidity and tropical climate.
Volocopter expects to start public demonstration flights after the trials have been completed.
Florian Reuter CEO of Volocopter said, “We are getting ready to start implementing the first fixed routes in cities. Singapore is a logical partner: The city is a true pioneer in technology and city development. We are confident this is another exciting step to make air taxi services a reality.”
In September 2017 Volocopter performed a public unmanned test flight in Dubai, where they partnered with the Roads and Transport Authority of Dubai.