SINGAPORE – A Volocopter air taxi completed its first manned flight at midday Tuesday across Singapore’s Marina Bay, marking the last trial in a test series aimed to make commercial air services a reality.
It was the company’s first piloted flight in the center of a megacity, the company said on Twitter.
“A 2X model of the company’s test series flown by a pilot onboard was used,” Volocopter Chief Executive Officer Florian Reuter said in a statement.
“The flight covered a distance of approximately 1.5 kilometers and lasted for two minutes at an average cruising height of 40 meters,” he added.
The aircraft had undergone several months of testing in Germany and a rigorous flight test program at Seletar Airport in accordance with the Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS).
The CAAS had been working with the company to facilitate the flight and “the Volocopter team went through a series of stringent evaluations to ensure that all the necessary safety requirements were met before the flight was allowed to take place,” CAAS’ director (aviation) Ho Yuen Sang said in the statement.
Partnered with Skyports, the company also built the first VoloPort prototype – the only physical infrastructure required for air taxis – on a floating dock in Marina Bay.
“The flight today in Singapore was the most advanced Volocopter flight yet and the piloted flight was as stable as ever… Never before have people been this close to experiencing what Urban Air Mobility in the city of tomorrow will feel like,” Reuter said.
Volocopter says it aims to bring affordable air taxi services to megacities worldwide.
Rideshare company Uber has also been developing air transportation planned for 2023 with Melbourne, Australia, and Dallas and Los Angeles, United States the first cities in line to offer the service. Demonstrator flights are set to begin in 2020.