Urban-Air Port® Air-One® has been selected as a winner of the UK Government’s Future Flight Challenge to develop aviation infrastructure and systems. The company has received a £1.2 million grant and plans to launch Air-One® – the world-first, fully-operational ‘pop up’ urban airport and charging hub for eVTOL aircraft in Coventry later this year.
Urban-Air Port® develops fully autonomous innovative zero emission infrastructure for future air mobility. The ambitious Air-One® project will bring industry, government and the public together to demonstrate how to unlock the potential of sustainable urban air mobility to reduce congestion, cut air pollution and holistically decarbonise transport while providing seamless passenger journeys and deliveries.
Air-One® will be unveiled during Coventry’s UK city of culture celebrations in 2021 and continue to form part of the Commonwealth Games in 2022.
Ricky Sandhu, Founder and Executive Chairman of Urban-Air Port®, said: “Cars need roads. Trains need rails. Planes need airports. eVTOLs will need Urban Air Ports. Over a hundred years ago, the world’s first commercial flight took off, creating the modern connected world. Urban Air Port® will improve connectivity across our cities, boost productivity and help the UK to take the lead in a whole new clean global economy.”
“Flying cars used to be a futuristic flight of fancy. Air-One® will bring clean urban air transport to the masses and unleash a new airborne world of zero emission mobility.”
The physical footprint of an Urban-Air Port® is 60 per cent smaller than a traditional heliport and using innovative modular construction, the sites can be installed in a matter of days. They emit net zero carbon emissions and can be operated completely off-grid, meaning they do not always have to rely on a suitable grid connection.
The company plans to develop more than 200 sites in the next five years, and cities in the UK and across the world have already expressed an interest in installing an Urban Air Port®. Having secured funding for Air-One®, Urban-Air Port® is now in discussions with investors to support its rapid commercialisation and global growth.
And to further public understanding and acceptance of the new technology,– the Air-One® site in Coventry will showcase live demonstrations of remote aircraft command and control, charging / refuelling and cargo and passenger loading for manned and unmanned eVTOL aircraft operating in three key markets: passenger air taxi services, autonomous logistics and disaster emergency management.
The Urban Air Mobility Division of Hyundai Motor Group has also chosen Urban-Air Port® as its priority infrastructure partner to support the global growth of this new sector, with the South Korean company planning to create its own eVTOL aircraft and commercialise by 2028.
Pamela Cohn, Chief Operating Officer for the Urban Air Mobility Division of Hyundai Motor Group, said: “As we advance our eVTOL aircraft programme, development of supporting infrastructure is imperative. Air-One® is a unique project that is set to help lead the way in developing a robust, accessible and intermodal infrastructure network for future mobility.
“We are excited to be part of this partnership in the UK, and look forward to working together to create community impact and opportunity through safe, affordable, and human-centred mobility solutions.”
Urban-Air Port® provides an integrated approach to the decarbonisation of cities. It is designed to support any eVTOL aircraft and complements other modes of sustainable transport as a hub for EVs, electric buses, scooters or other vehicles.
The modular design enables Urban Air Ports® to be easily dismantled and moved to alternative sites, as the air-mobility sector develops. This design also means the sites are ideal for disaster emergency management. Urban Air Ports® can rapidly deploy drones and other eVTOL to collect and transport emergency supplies, equipment and people where needed.
Malloy Aeronautics, a leading UK-based drone developer, logistics and engineering company, is Urban Air Port’s® UK drone aircraft partner. The company’s large cargo drones will be demonstrated at the Air-One® site.
Oriol Badia, CEO of Malloy Aeronautics, added: “It is a key goal for Malloy – to introduce unmanned air logistics into an urban environment and merge it with supporting infrastructure that is flexible and resilient, hosting intelligent operating systems and state of the art innovation.
“Air-One® provides the ability to service multiple transport requirements of the future – from disaster relief to essential and everyday supplies for citizens across the UK. These are truly exciting opportunities especially with a strong partnership between Malloy and Urban-Air Port® – thus unifying serviceability and operability, forming a turnkey product.”