AIR TRANSPORT

Skyryse Expands To New Headquarters Amid Significant Growth Targeting Massive Revolution In General Aviation

PRnewswire | March 28, 2023 | Read time : 02:15 min

Skyryse Expands To New Headquarters Amid Significant Growth

Skyryse, bringing trust, safety, and the accessibility of flight through a highly-automated and touchscreen flight control system, opened the doors to its new El Segundo headquarters this week. As the company continues to hire aviation and aerospace talent and charges toward certification, it has outgrown its 9,000 sq. ft. office space and opens its doors to a new state-of-the-art workspace in El Segundo, widely recognized as the aerospace capital of the world.

After quickly building a top-notch aviation engineering team and implementing a highly experienced leadership organization, Skyryse grew from 30 employees at the beginning of 2022 and closed the year with 90 employees. As the company continues to scale development and secures a supplemental type certificate for its one-of-a-kind airframe-agnostic flight deck, the company has opened a second state-of-the-art development facility near its headquarters in El Segundo.

"We are growing at a rapid clip and continue to look for top engineering talent to join our mission of reducing general aviation accidents, making flight simpler and safer, and revolutionizing the future of transportation," said Dr. Mark Groden, Founder and CEO of Skyryse. "We've put a lot of thought into creating an environment that communicates our vision of bringing the freedom and joy of safer flight right in the middle of one of the largest aerospace hubs in the U.S."

In October of 2021, Skyryse closed a $205M Series B funding round led by Fidelity Management & Research Company and Monashee Investment Management, the largest Series B fundraise in aerospace history.

About Skyryse

Los Angeles-based Skyryse is bringing trust, safety, and the accessibility of flight for all through FlightOS, its easy and intuitive integrated flight control system. FlightOS removes many complexities of managing an aircraft during standard flight operations, inclement weather, and emergencies. Skyryse has raised more than $260 million from leading investors, including Fidelity Management & Research Company, Monashee Investment Management, ArrowMark Partners, Venrock, Eclipse Ventures, Cantos, Stanford University, and Bill Ford, Executive Chair, Ford Motor Company.

Spotlight

On April 30th, a Boeing 737 MAX 8 operated by American Airlines had to perform a go around at Charleston due to a JetBlue Airbus A220-300 still being on the runway it was due to land on. Aborting its landing and circling around while the departing JetBlue aircraft took off, a loss of separation incident occurred. While this reportedly happens ‘all the time,’ let’s look at the details of this most recent occurrence…

Spotlight

On April 30th, a Boeing 737 MAX 8 operated by American Airlines had to perform a go around at Charleston due to a JetBlue Airbus A220-300 still being on the runway it was due to land on. Aborting its landing and circling around while the departing JetBlue aircraft took off, a loss of separation incident occurred. While this reportedly happens ‘all the time,’ let’s look at the details of this most recent occurrence…

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AIR TRANSPORT

Vertical Expands Presence in Asia-Pacific With VX4 Aircraft Pre-order From Leading South Korean Mobility Firm Kakao Mobility

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.

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AIR TRANSPORT

Stratolaunch Expands Fleet with Virgin Orbit's Modified Boeing 747

PRnewswire | May 26, 2023

Stratolaunch, LLC ("Stratolaunch") today announced that it has received approval from the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware to acquire Virgin Orbit's modified Boeing 747 and its related parts and equipment, marking an expansion of Stratolaunch's air-launch fleet. The acquisition is expected to close by July 31, 2023. Stratolaunch is a technology accelerator that enables reusable and routine hypersonic testing through world-class aerospace vehicles and in-flight test capabilities. Upon closing of the acquisition, the additional aircraft will be repurposed as a launch platform for Stratolaunch's Talon-A reusable hypersonic testbeds and is expected to be fully operational in 2024. The expansion of Stratolaunch's fleet will increase its in-flight test capacity and ability to support government and commercial customers globally. "The addition of this aircraft is a transformational milestone," said Dr. Zachary Krevor, President and CEO of Stratolaunch. "With Roc remaining as our mainstay aircraft, an additional 747 brings expanded capabilities and flexibility to our platform. We will be able to increase both our flight test capacity and reach to become an even stronger partner to global customers." The acquisition of the modified 747 follows Stratolaunch's first successful Talon-A vehicle separation test on May 13. During the separation release trial, Stratolaunch demonstrated clean and safe separation of hypersonic vehicles and confirmed telemetry between the vehicles and on-the-ground communication assets. With this landmark test complete, Stratolaunch will progress toward its first hypersonic flight of the TA-1 expendable testbed in late summer 2023. Krevor continued: "The need for hypersonic testing has never been greater and we are committed to fulfilling this national imperative. We are making tremendous strides as we continue to enable the future of hypersonic testing. With the recent successful Talon-A separation test, we are excited to prepare for our first hypersonic flight of the TA-1 testbed." The acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions. Following closing of the acquisition, the aircraft will undergo maintenance and modification to accommodate its new hypersonic test mission. The launch platform will also be renamed in the coming months. About Stratolaunch Stratolaunch's mission is to advance high-speed technology through innovative design, manufacturing, and operation of world-class aerospace vehicles. Stratolaunch designs, manufactures, and launches aerospace vehicles and technologies to fulfill several important national needs, including the need for reliable, routine access to space and the need to significantly advance the nation’s ability to design and operate hypersonic vehicles.

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AEROSPACE

Volatus Aerospace Receives Canada-Wide Approval to Operate Heavy Spray Drones for Precision Agriculture

Accesswire | May 31, 2023

Volatus Aerospace Corp. announces it has received a Transport Canada special authority to operate heavy crop spraying drones weighing over 25 kg anywhere in Canada. This special authority enables pilots who are trained through Volatus Aerospace's training program, operating in compliance with Transport Canada's conditions outlined in the approval, to operate throughout Canada. "The current advanced drone regulations in Canada restrict the flight of a remotely piloted aircraft weighing over 25 kg within national airspace, this approval permits Volatus Aerospace to operate a heavy crop spraying drone, which has a maximum takeoff weight of 101 kg," explained Reno Matthews, Director of Regulatory Compliance for Volatus Aerospace. "This unlocks our ability to offer compliant drone crop spraying services across Canada for our precision agriculture clients." Because of its ability to surgically target plants and provide unparalleled spray control, drone crop spraying has been increasingly adopted world-wide as a cost-efficient and greener method for maintaining crops. "Using traditional methods, like crop dusting aircraft, is not only costly but imprecise as healthy plants are treated with unnecessary chemicals alongside diseased ones. Drones use less product and can focus only on the plants that need treatment, making it a more efficient, safer, and cost-effective way to maintain crops," added John Johnstone, Sales Director for Agriculture at Volatus Aerospace. "Consumers want less chemicals on their products and it is better for the environment, it is the future of agriculture." The dispersal of some chemicals is pending Health Canada approval; however, non-pesticide type treatments are largely unrestricted today. Moreover, big Ag companies, such as Bayer, are taking steps to help farmers benefit from these new technologies. According to FACT.MR, theglobal drone spraying services market is expected to reach a valuation of $213.7 million USD in 2023 and is predicted to accelerate at a combined annual growth rate of 24.7% to top market size of $ 1,942.9 million USD by 2023. In Canada, primary farming consists of more than 189,000 farms covering 62.2 million hectares. About Volatus Aerospace: Volatus Aerospace Corp. is a leading provider of integrated drone solutions throughout North America and growing into Latin America and globally. Volatus serves civil, public safety, and defense markets with imaging and inspection, security and surveillance, equipment sales and support, training, as well as R&D, design, and manufacturing. Through our subsidiary, Volatus Aviation, we are introducing green and innovative drone solutions to supplement and replace traditional aircraft and helicopters for long-linear inspections such as pipeline, energy, rail, and cargo services. Volatus is committed to carbon neutrality; the fostering of a safe, equitable and inclusive workplace; and responsible governance.

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