Vertical Aerospace has partnered with Babcock International to explore new applications of its VX4 eVTOL aircraft for established airline customers including Virgin Atlantic, aircraft lessors such as Avolon, and helicopter and tourism operators such as Bristow and Iberojet.

Vertical and Babcock will set up a joint working group to explore how to use the VX4 in aerial emergency medical services (EMS) and cargo transportation to reduce their carbon impact at lower overall cost.

The piloted zero operating emissions four-passenger VX4 is capable of travelling over 100 miles at a top speed over 200mph, while producing minimal noise.

Babcock has over thirty-five years of experience in EMS, and is the largest single operator delivering helicopter EMS in the UK, reducing medical response time and saving lives, but also significantly minimising the long-term effects of injuries.

The group will review how to use the VX4 for attending accidents and providing emergency transport between hospitals and will also explore how eVTOL may be expanded in the future to support the armed forces with medium range logistics delivery and casualty evacuation services.

Vertical Aerospace founder & CEO Stephen Fitzpatrick said: “Emergency services and logistics sectors must respond and adapt to climate change and we will support Babcock as a trusted provider of emergency response services in their efforts to decarbonise their operations.”

Babcock managing director of UK Aviation Phil Craig added: “Partnering with Vertical Aerospace not only enables us to harness our extensive digital expertise across Babcock, but also our reputation as a trusted maintenance, repair and overhaul (MRO) provider with a highly skilled workforce.

“We are committed to reducing our carbon footprint and this partnership is an exciting step into the world of electric aircrafts, which will allow us to understand how it can deliver critical care and logistical support in challenging environments at zero emissions.”

In April, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) agreed to concurrently validate the UK CAA’s certification of Vertical Aerospace’s VX4 eVTOL aircraft.

In February, Vertical Aerospace agreed a joint development programme with Leonardo to design, test, manufacture and supply a carbon composite fuselage for Vertical’s VX4 eVTOL aircraft.