businesswire | May 22, 2023
Vertical Aerospace a global aerospace and technology company that is pioneering zero-emissions aviation, today announces that South Korean mobility technology company, Kakao Mobility, has pre-ordered up to 50 of Vertical’s VX4 aircraft, adding South Korea to Vertical’s list of customer launch markets.
Kakao Mobility, the largest Mobility-as-a-Service (MaaS) platform in South Korea with more than 30 million registered users, is the mobility subsidiary of South Korean internet giant, Kakao Corporation. Kakao Mobility runs the country’s most popular taxi-hailing app, Kakao T, providing taxi-hailing, designated driver booking, parking space search, and Kakao Navi app providing real-time traffic information services.
Vertical and Kakao Mobility will establish a Joint Working Group (JWG) to drive the commercialisation of AAM services in South Korea, including the exploration of network and fleet planning, infrastructure requirements, regulatory development, and consumer awareness of eVTOL mobility solutions.
South Korea is one of the largest economies in the world and is home to globally leading technology companies. Seoul, as well as other regions including Busan, is expected to have a significant Urban Air Mobility (UAM) market potential.
This JWG builds on Vertical’s existing consortium partnership with Kakao Mobility, LG Uplus, GS E&C, and the continued engagement with Korea’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport, for the K-UAM Grand Challenge (K-UAM GC).
The agreement with Kakao Mobility marks Vertical’s first partnership with a mobility technology company, enabling Vertical to leverage their existing customer base and vehicle network to create a seamless air-to-ground passenger journey and UAM ecosystem in the country.
Stephen Fitzpatrick, Vertical’s Founder and CEO said, “We are delighted to be partnering with Kakao Mobility. With its over 30 million registered users, Kakao Mobility is the go-to choice to ‘hail a ride’ and with our partnership, we look forward to people across South Korea being able to fly in a VX4 in the years to come. We are thrilled to be working together to make our joint vision a reality'.”
Alex Ryu, CEO of Kakao Mobility commented, “Kakao Mobility is the leading mobility platform and in an AI-enabled world with needs for faster, eco-friendly means of moving, we understand that UAM will be a game-changer in the near future. We are excited to take part in Vertical Aerospace’s mission to launch its VX4 globally and to bring an UAM service to Korean market. We will be expanding our business not only on the ground but to the sky through this partnership. As a consolidated mobility platform, Kakao Mobility will develop the “De Facto Standard” for UAM services. We look forward to collaborating closely to complete the K-UAM Grand Challenge successfully and into commercialization shortly after K-UAM GC.”
Vertical already has strong ties to South Korea with Hanwha, a key partner for the VX4 certification aircraft. Vertical is leveraging Hanwha’s four decades of industrial expertise to collaborate on the development and supply of actuator systems for the VX4.
About Vertical Aerospace
Vertical Aerospace is pioneering electric aviation. The Company was founded in 2016 by Stephen Fitzpatrick, an established entrepreneur best known as the founder of the OVO Group, a leading energy and technology group and Europe’s largest independent energy retailer. Vertical has focused on building the most experienced and senior team in the eVTOL industry, who have previously certified and supported over 30 different civil and military aircraft and propulsion systems.
Vertical’s top-tier partner ecosystem, including Rolls-Royce, Honeywell Aerospace, Leonardo and GKN Aerospace, is expected to de-risk operational execution and its pathway to certification allowing for a lean cost structure and enabling production at scale. Vertical has a leading pre-order book from a diverse global customer base, creating multiple potential near term and actionable routes to market. Customers include airlines, aircraft lessors, helicopter operators and tourism groups, including American Airlines, Virgin Atlantic, Avolon, Bristow, Marubeni, Iberojet and FLYINGGROUP, as well as Japan Airlines (JAL), Gol, Air Greenland, Gozen Holding and AirAsia, through Avolon’s VX4 placements.
Vertical’s VX4 eVTOL is projected to be capable of transporting a pilot and up to four passengers, traveling distances of up to 100 miles, and achieving a cruise speed of 150 miles per hour, while producing minimal noise and zero operating emissions.
Vertical’s VX4 prototype has successfully undertaken piloted flight tests and it is now in the next stages of the flight test programme, which is expected to reach higher altitudes and speeds, as well as demonstrating the transition from vertical to horizontal flight.
PRnewswire | May 09, 2023
RapidFlight, a Virginia-based unmanned aircraft manufacturing company, is proud to announce the launch of their new UAS, the M2. This innovative UAS features a high efficiency, heavy fuel engine with high-capacity generators to power various sensor, communication, and mission system payloads. Runway independent, the M2 can operate anywhere in the world to support the warfighter or first responder at the point-of-need.
"By integrating digital engineering with 3D additive manufacturing, we have been able to create a new class of affordable long range Group 3 UAS. The M2 will usher in a new era for unmanned systems, allowing for the mass production of a high-performance aircraft to meet multiple missions with previously unattainable affordability and production flexibility. This unprecedented flight demonstrates that UAS made with additive manufacturing can have uncompromised performance," said Jay Gundlach,Ph.D., RapidFlight's Chief Executive Officer.
The M2 utilizes state-of-the-art Digital Engineering and 3D Additive Manufacturing making it a unique and adaptable system that can be produced at scale. A 23-60 lb payload capacity provides flexibility with the ability to carry EO/IR, SAR, SIGINT and communication relay payloads. The modular design of the M2 simplifies operational logistics for line replaceable avionics, engines, payloads, and airframe components enabling higher operational rates at lower sustainment costs.
Designed to provide Group 5 range from a Group 3 system, the M2 offers a lightweight alternative without sacrificing endurance. Recently RapidFlight completed a 21-hour continuous flight using the M2 which has been designed to meet a maximum flight time of 36 hours.
"With this flight, we've shown it is possible to build high performance aircraft at low cost and in record time. Equally important is that we can rapidly adapt the design to other customers who might have different payloads or mission needs, without compromising our ability to produce the airplanes affordably and at scale," said Jean-Charles Ledé, RapidFlight's Chief Technology Officer.
The M2 accompanies a range of UAS that RapidFlight is designing and manufacturing in their Virginia-based facility. With industry-leading UAS fabrication time, RapidFlight can deliver capability to the field faster than ever with the M2 and future systems.
RapidFlight is an integrated designer and manufacturer of unmanned aircraft based in Manassas, Virginia. RapidFlight is accelerating the time from concept to flight while building aircraft systems that meet the demanding challenges, evolving requirements, and tight timelines that are inherent to our national security. Through next-generation manufacturing processes and a team of industry leaders, RapidFlight is ushering in a new era of aircraft manufacturing.
Businesswire | May 08, 2023
Sidus Space, Inc., a Space and Defense-as-a-Service satellite company focused on mission-critical hardware manufacturing; multi-disciplinary engineering services; satellite design, production, launch planning, mission operations; and in-orbit support has announced the successful completion of a groundbreaking external flight test platform mission.
In November of 2019, twelve 3D-printed ceramic samples were sent to the International Space Station (ISS) aboard the Sidus Space External Flight Test Platform (EFTP) in support of a study performed by Alfred University. The 3D-printed ceramic samples were exposed to space weather and radiation environment for approximately 260 days on Sidus’ EFTP. Upon return, the samples were evaluated for radiation damage and structural integrity by examining their mechanical properties after having experienced thermal cycling during flight and mechanical vibrations during launching and landing.
"We are pleased to be able to use EFTP to support valuable research to inform future spacecraft design as our years of spaceflight heritage have done so to this point,” said Carol Craig, Founder and CEO of Sidus Space.
EFTP is a highly reconfigurable external testing platform which is brought up to the ISS and is mounted outside in the harsh space environment. EFTP offers unique opportunities to conduct microgravity research in space. EFTP provides the ability to develop, test, and fly experiments, hardware, materials, and advanced electronics from the ISS at a reduced cost and schedule. EFTP allows for rapid on-orbit testing and payload return, increase Technology Readiness Level (TRL) ability and because payloads are returned, a detailed post-mission analysis of effects of the space environment are possible. The EFTP platform is one of our important space platforms offered and helps fulfill Sidus Space’s commitment to innovation within the industry by providing a comprehensive end-to-end space-based infrastructure.
About Sidus Space
Sidus Space , located in Cape Canaveral, Florida, operates from a 35,000-square-foot manufacturing, assembly, integration, and testing facility focused on vertically integrated Space-as-a-Service solutions including end-to-end satellite support. The company’s rich heritage includes the design and manufacture of many flight and ground component parts and systems for various space-related customers and programs. Sidus Space has a broad range of Space-As-a-Service offerings including space-rated hardware manufacturing, design engineering, satellite manufacturing and platform development, launch and support services, data analytics services and satellite constellation management.Sidus Space has a mission of Bringing Space Down to Earth™ and a vision of enabling space flight heritage status for new technologies while delivering data and predictive analytics to domestic and global customers. Any corporation, industry, or vertical can start their journey off-planet with Sidus Space’s rapidly scalable, low-cost satellite services, space-based solutions, and testing alternatives. More than just a “Satellite-as-a-Service” provider, Sidus Space is a trusted Mission Partner–from concept to Low Earth Orbit and beyond. Sidus Space is ISO 9001:2015, AS9100 Rev. D certified, and ITAR registered.