Japan’s first Urban Air Mobility Centre set up in Tsukuba City, with EHang’s EH216‑S taking flight during opening ceremony

EHang has con­firmed it has estab­lished Japan’s first state-of-the-art Urban Air Mobil­i­ty (UAM) cen­tre in Tsuku­ba City, Ibara­ki Pre­fec­ture.

The facil­i­ty will serve as a demon­stra­tion flight site, ground infra­struc­ture, and main­te­nance base for EHang’s var­i­ous pilot­less eVTOL air­craft in the region, includ­ing its EH216‑S mod­el. This UAM cen­tre rep­re­sents a mile­stone in Japan’s advanced air mobil­i­ty indus­try.

Sit­u­at­ed on the site of the for­mer Heli­copter Con­trol and Com­mand Cen­ter owned by Ibara­ki Pre­fec­tur­al Gov­ern­ment, the UAM Cen­ter hous­es hangars with capac­i­ty for approx­i­mate­ly 25 units of EH216‑S air­craft. The shared land­ing plat­form, used by both heli­copters and eVTOLs, cov­ers an area of around 30,000 square meters.

Devel­oped by AirX in col­lab­o­ra­tion with Tsuku­ba Air­lines, the UAM Cen­ter is designed to meet the evolv­ing needs of next-gen­er­a­tion air mobil­i­ty that encom­pass­es pilot­less eVTOL air­craft, heli­copters and pri­vate jets.

Huazhi Hu, Founder, Chair­man, and CEO of EHang, said: “Con­grat­u­la­tions on the inau­gu­ra­tion of Japan’s first UAM Cen­tre. This is a key mile­stone in UAM, bring­ing us one step clos­er to intro­duc­ing a new era of trans­porta­tion to the pub­lic. EHang will con­tin­ue col­lab­o­rat­ing with our part­ners in pro­mot­ing safe, autonomous, and envi­ron­men­tal­ly friend­ly UAM solu­tions in Japan, as we aim to offer our pilot­less eVTOLs to a glob­al audi­ence and enhance the lives of peo­ple world­wide.”

The estab­lish­ment of the UAM Cen­ter is the result of a strate­gic part­ner­ship between EHang and AirX, a lead­ing Japan­ese air mobil­i­ty dig­i­tal plat­form com­pa­ny. Dur­ing the inau­gu­ra­tion cer­e­mo­ny attend­ed by Tat­suo Igarashi, may­or of Tsuku­ba City, the EH216‑S pilot­less eVTOL air­craft suc­cess­ful­ly com­plet­ed its first flight in the Kan­to region for aer­i­al sight­see­ing.

Tezu­ka Kiwa­mu, Founder and CEO of AirX, added: “Through the estab­lish­ment of this UAM Cen­ter, our goal is to show­case air mobil­i­ty flight expe­ri­ences to the pub­lic. In the future, we plan to offer aer­i­al sight­see­ing ser­vices with the cut­ting-edge EH216‑S eVTOL air­craft at this loca­tion.

“Look­ing ahead, AirX is gear­ing up to launch addi­tion­al UAM Cen­ters in Tokyo, solid­i­fy­ing our com­mit­ment to spear­head­ing the devel­op­ment of UAM and trans­form­ing the future of trans­porta­tion in Japan.”

EHang has been active­ly expand­ing its pres­ence in the glob­al mar­ket. To date, the EH216‑S pilot­less eVTOL air­craft has suc­cess­ful­ly con­duct­ed flights across 12 cities in Japan, show­cas­ing its ver­sa­til­i­ty in var­i­ous use cas­es, includ­ing aer­i­al sight­see­ing, island trans­porta­tion, aer­i­al logis­tics, and emer­gency ser­vices.

In 2023, EHang became a mem­ber of Japan’s Pub­lic-Pri­vate Com­mit­tee for Advanced Air Mobil­i­ty. This recog­ni­tion under­scores EHang’s piv­otal role in dri­ving the advance­ment of Japan’s inno­v­a­tive air trans­porta­tion ini­tia­tives, par­tic­u­lar­ly as the unique pilot­less eVTOL provider among the 56 com­mit­tee mem­bers.

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Jason Pritchard

Jason Pritchard is the Editor of eVTOL Insights. He holds a BA from Leicester's De Montfort University and has worked in Journalism and Public Relations for more than a decade. Outside of work, Jason enjoys playing and watching football and golf. He also has a keen interest in Ancient Egypt.

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