Ascendance Flight Technologies has received letters of intent from the US, Asia and Europe for 245 five-seat Atea eVTOLs with patented modular hybrid propulsion system that will go into production in 2025 and have a range of 400km.

Ascendance unveiled ATEA at the end of last year, and currently has around 50 employees, which are expected to double with new facilities at the Muret-Lherm airfield, as well as its next full-scale prototype test campaign, scheduled for next year. Demonstration flights will be held in Paris during the 2024 Olympics.

Ascendance co-founder and CEO Jean-Christophe Lambert said: “Our project to decarbonise aviation had to be anchored in reality, so we built Atea around the cornerstones of our industry, which include safety, efficiency, resilience, comfort and cost effectiveness.

“These imperatives are at the heart of our customers’ demands and guide our innovations. With Atea, we can now offer our customers an easier transition to a low-carbon fleet, with high-performance, competitive aircraft available at very short notice.”

PhilJets Group head of sales & marketing Geoffroy Cahen remarked: “Ascendance’s proposal is conclusive, offering a carbon-free aircraft adapted to a wide range of routes, uses and needs, which is what we are looking for in the highly competitive and constantly changing market in which we operate.

“We serve routes across the 7,000-island Philippine archipelago, from charter flights to tourist flights, medical evacuations, and on-site professional transportation and Ascendance was willing to include us in the development process.”

FlyShare chairman James Hopkins added: “FlyShare is excited to be the first FAA Part 135 carrier to deploy the Ascendance Atea in the USA, with its superior range, speed, and load capacity.

“We are impressed with Ascendance’s power plant technical decisions and ability to incrementally improve the emissions profile over the first few years of its introduction into service.”

Ascendance Flight Technologies is making steady progress towards certification and entry of its aircraft into service, having established a good working partnership with buyers.

Ascendance co-founder and CCO Thibault Baldivia continued: “Atea’s performances and assets have struck a chord with these customers, as they offer a tailor-made response to their operational needs.

“We are now working closely with future users to ensure that the aircraft is perfectly adapted to their markets, customers and business models.”

In February, Yugo Global Industries signed a contract with Ascendance to purchase 18 ATEA aircrafts.