Uber Elevate partner Pipistrel has unveiled its eVTOL concept
Slovenian light aircraft manufacturer Pipistrel has unveiled an electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) concept.
Their new design will be able to carry two-to-six passengers at a time for small-scale family transport.
The aircraft-style vehicle utilises dedicated propulsion systems for both cruising and vertical lift.
Pipistrel claimed that the new eVTOL “will fly longer distances and at higher speeds than previous models. Utilising a new integrated vertical lift system the vehicle is designed for scalability and will lower operating costs while offering an upgraded rider experience.”
Pipistrel, the winner of the 2011 NASA Green Flight Challenge, previously produced the G4 concept, an eVTOL able to fly four passengers for 100 miles (160 km) at a speed of 108 mph (173 kmph).
Pipistrel founder and general manager Ivo Boscarol said: “Pairing an innovative integrated vertical lift system, which is quiet and efficient and with highly aerodynamic wings results in a new class of eVTOL that maximises high-speed cruise performance and dramatically lowers cost of operation for a clear advantage to Uber Elevate passengers.”
Pipistrel made the announcement at the second Uber Elevate Summit, a year since the two companies first partnered up to create eVTOLs.
Uber Elevate has been forging partnerships to design and build the technology and infrastructure for its ambitious plan, such as ChargePoint’s recent 2-MW eVTOL charger.
UberAir, Uber’s proposed electric aircraft service, is expected to start demonstration flights in 2020 before providing its first commercial flights in 2023 in LA and the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex in Texas.
Uber director of engineering – Elevate vehicle systems Mark Moore said: “As an Uber Elevate partner, [Pipistel’s] eVTOL concept is pushing towards the next generation of distributed electric propulsion. We’re thrilled to continue our work with Pipistrel, and look forward to bringing this concept to the Elevate network.”