Two years in the past, in November of 2020, the Mayor of Seoul took a journey in an EHang 216. The autonomous check flight was launched over the densely populated metropolis of Seoul, below a “Particular Certificates of Airworthiness,” the primary ever granted in Korea to a passenger-grade AAV.
The flight marked the primary trial flight after the Korea authorities introduced the “Korean City Air Mobility (Ok-UAM) Roadmap” in June 2020, projecting that business passenger drone providers could be obtainable as quickly as 2023. One yr later, in November of 2021, Volocopter launched their first crewed check flight in Seoul, with Volocopter CEO Florian Reuter stating: “With MOLIT’s complete Ok-UAM roadmap, South Korea is effectively positioned to attain the purpose of commercializing UAM by 2025.”
It’s a short while body. However because the spectacular show of scale fashions, full-size plane, flight simulators, and extra on show at this week’s Sensible Geo Expo in Goyang demonstrates, the Korean authorities, trade, and individuals are able to take off.
Individuals crowded in to the UAM corridor to expertise flight simulations of what an air taxi looks like. In a mixture of amusement park journey expertise and extremely subtle engineering, contributors donned VR headsets and took their seats to expertise UAM flight – in some instances as a passenger, in others as a pilot. It was an incredible expertise – not fairly like using in an airplane, not precisely like using in an elevator: however actually safe, and as a primary time passenger, thrilling.
Maybe most fascinating concerning the S. Korean UAM sector is the big variety of trade contributors. Along with Ehang and Hyundai’s Supernal have been fashions of the Hanwha Methods Butterfly, collectively developed with US-based OverAir. The lean-rotor eVTOL is designed to attenuate noise. Kencoa Aerospace’s AstroX’s open cockpit design with pontoons was completely not like different fashions on show: it’s designed to be flown from a ship to the airport. Analysis establishments and authorities businesses participated in growing the simulators on show.
Scale fashions of vertiports – and vertistops, like a subway station or bus cease – below design have been additionally on show, to provide folks an concept of what the UAM infrastructure will appear like.
From the road of younger folks, enterprise folks, and spectators ready to expertise UAM flight in a simulation surroundings, air taxis might be met with enthusiasm when the do launch commercially.
Learn extra about city air mobility in Korea:
Miriam McNabb is the Editor-in-Chief of DRONELIFE and CEO of JobForDrones, an expert drone providers market, and a fascinated observer of the rising drone trade and the regulatory surroundings for drones. Miriam has penned over 3,000 articles targeted on the business drone house and is a world speaker and acknowledged determine within the trade. Miriam has a level from the College of Chicago and over 20 years of expertise in excessive tech gross sales and advertising for brand new applied sciences.
For drone trade consulting or writing, E mail Miriam.
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