Honeywell will supply flight deck technologies for Vertical Aerospace’s eVTOL demonstrator aircraft programme, following a letter of intent which names the company as the provider of displays, vehicle management controls and operating system

The agreement extends the collaboration between the two companies, following an agreement to equip Vertical Aerospace’s demonstrator with Honeywell’s Compact Fly-By-Wire System and flight control software, which was signed in 2019.

Stéphane Fymat, Vice President and General Manager, UAS/UAM, Honeywell Aerospace, said: “One of the most important outcomes of this programme will be the successful demonstration of simplified vehicle operations, which essentially is about making these aircraft more intuitive and flattening the learning curve to safely fly them.

“Vertical Aerospace has been a wonderful partner, and we’re excited to be part of its demonstrator aircraft to address this challenge and, in doing so, help move the entire industry forward.”

This new programme will help Vertical Aerospace understand flight characteristics, system requirements and the flight deck user interface to further the development of its urban air mobility (UAM) vehicle.

It also includes several other technologies present in the front end of the aircraft. These include multi-touch displays, avionics system controls, avionics software and the vehicle operating system.

These technologies will work together with other systems onboard the aircraft to make the aircraft simpler to operate than a traditional airplane or helicopter, while still ensuring safety of the operator and other occupants. This type of ‘simplified vehicle operation’ will be a transformative next step in the UAM industry.

Michael Cervenka, CEO of Vertical Aerospace, said: “Vertical is well advanced in the development of its next-generation, high-performance, passenger-carrying vehicle.

“We are excited at the prospect of broadening our already fantastic partnership with Honeywell, enabling our vehicles to leverage not only Honeywell’s state of the art flight control systems, but also to marry these with the very latest in intuitive and safe flight deck technologies.”

Earlier this year, Honeywell formed a new business unit dedicated to the growing Unmanned Aerial Systems and Urban Air Mobility industries. And the company also begun in-flight testing of sensors that will guide urban air mobility vehicles to land without pilot intervention.

Whereas Vertical Aerospace teased an image of its latest eVTOL aircraft on social media last week, and has already developed two concepts – named POC and Seraph.