By Naomi Szeben
Near Earth Autonomy and Volocopter’s VoloDrone team announced a partnership to test Near Earth Autonomy’s autonomous flight technology on Volocopter’s electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) VoloDrone aircraft.
Under the partnership, Volocopter and Near Earth Autonomy aim to further autonomous urban air mobility (UAM). Both companies plan to demonstrate their progress in a Beyond Visual Line of Sight (BVLOS) Capability Demonstration in Munich in 2022.
Volocopter brings 10 years of eVTOL flight testing experience with over 1,000 flight tests to the project. Its VoloDrone vehicle is designed to transport cargo where conventional ground-based transport is limited (due to topography, regulation, or simply congested areas of traffic).
Near Earth Autonomy has conducted 3,500 flights lasting over 2,000 flight hours of their autonomy system across various aircraft types, sizes, and environments in the last eight years of aerial autonomy development. Together they will aim to establish standardized BVLOS capabilities for VoloDrone missions within the business-to-business transport sector.
“We are very excited to work together with the leading player in the aerial autonomy industry,” said Christophe Hommet, Volocopter Chief Engineer, VoloDrone.