Pipistrel and Uber Sign a Cooperation Agreement
The Pipistrel and Uber (USA) companies signed an agreement on cooperation in designing an electric passenger aircraft with vertical take-off and landing (VTOL). The first experimental aircraft will be manufactured before 2020.
According to Pipistrel, the agreement with Uber provides for the integrated development of electric VTOL aircrafts for the transportation of goods and passengers in megalopolises. The goal of the partnership is to provide users of the future network, which they called the Uber Elevate Network, with the possibility of ordering a transportation service using the Pipistrel VTOL aircraft. Uber plans to organize a permanent network of VTOL electric aircrafts in megacities.
“This cooperation marks the beginning of an exciting journey to a qualitatively new means of transportation that will not only save passenger time, but will also be environmentally friendly,” the Director of Pipistrel Ivo Boscarol comments on the conclusion of the contract. The Uber’s Director for Aeronautical Engineering Mark Moore notes that Pipistrel is the only company in the world that produces electric aircrafts on a serial basis.
Pipistrel will design compact airplanes for short-haul services within the public transport system based on the capabilities of VTOL, while Uber will develop software and hardware to monitor airspace and control VTOL aircraft inside the network. The American company will also provide an interface for communication with air traffic controllers.
The Project Also Involves Bell Helicopter and Embraer
Besides Pipistrel, Bell Helicopter (USA) and Embraer (Brazil) will cooperate with the US Uber Company in this project, according to STA and with reference to the AFP French News Agency. They have set a goal to produce the first demonstration series of electric aircrafts before the World Fair in Dubai in 2020. It should be fully used for transportation to the next World Fair, which will be held in Dallas in 2023.