AutoFlight and Groupe ADP to test eVTOL aircraft at 2024 Paris Olympics

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AutoFlight and Groupe ADP have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to experiment with the Prosperity I electric take-off and landing aircraft (eVTOL) from Pontoise Vertiport in France during the 2024 Paris Olympic and Paralympic Games.

AutoFlight’s Prosperity I fixed-wing aircraft has a 250km range and energy consumption levels comparable to those of an electric car. According to the partners, AutoFlight is one of only a few eVTOL OEMs to have mastered the challenging ‘transition phase’ from vertical to horizontal flight. The advanced engineering of the aircraft enables reductions in trip length while maximizing asset utilization in urban environments.

Under the MoU, AutoFlight will conduct experimental piloted flights from the Pontoise Vertiport, which offers a comprehensive infrastructure encompassing dedicated take-off and landing areas, a passenger terminal, a fully equipped maintenance hangar and advanced control areas. The companies highlighted that because Groupe ADP is developing eVTOL infrastructure in the Paris region with five additional vertiports in the making (Paris heliport in Issy-les-Moulineaux, Paris Austerlitz, Paris Charles de Gaulle, Paris Le Bourget and Saint-Cyr- l’Ecole), Pontoise offers the optimal setting to test AutoFlight’s eVTOL technology.

Signed on June 20, 2023, by Tian Yu, CEO of AutoFlight, and Edward Arkwright, deputy CEO of Groupe ADP, this collaboration aims to highlight AutoFlight’s potential in scaling up sustainable urban logistics and passenger transportation under real-world conditions. This collaboration is part of a broader framework of air mobility experiments that Groupe ADP has undertaken since 2020. It also contributes to the efforts of the Paris region to position itself at the forefront of urban mobility.

Mark Henning, managing director of AutoFlight Europe, said, “Through conducting experimental piloted flights from the Pontoise Vertiport, a best-in-class infrastructure operated by Groupe ADP, we aim to showcase the immense potential of advanced air mobility. Our 250km-range eVTOLs will operate in real-world conditions, highlighting their capabilities in urban environments and their invaluable contribution to sustainable logistics and mobility. The 2024 Paris Olympic and Paralympic Games will be a global celebration and we would take pride in AutoFlight’s technology being part of it. We are grateful to Groupe ADP for their collaboration.”

Arkwright added, “We are delighted to be working with AutoFlight to enable experimental flights of their eVTOLs during the 2024 Paris Olympic and Paralympic Games. Pontoise Vertiport, equipped with exceptional infrastructure and facilities, serves as an optimal platform to support electric, innovative aircraft. This collaboration resonates with our commitment to delivering sustainable and efficient aircraft infrastructure as we continue to pave the way for the future of aviation.”

In November 2022, Groupe ADP, Skyports and Volocopter commissioned a fully integrated vertiport terminal for the urban air mobility (UAM) industry at a testbed at Pontoise-Cormeilles airfield in France. Click here to read the full story.

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