Vertical Flight Society Electric VTOL Directory Hits 1,000 Designs

FAIRFAX, VIRGINIA, UNITED STATES, April 22, 2024 /EINPresswire.com/ — The Vertical Flight Society (VFS), the world’s leading non-profit organization working to advance vertical flight, announces today that the number of electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft concepts being tracked in its World eVTOL Aircraft Directory has now reached 1,000 concepts from more than 430 designers. The directory is part of the VFS Electric VTOL News website, www.eVTOL.news, the world’s first and most extensive online resource on eVTOL aircraft and technology.

Electric propulsion enables new aircraft concepts with enhanced performance, low or no emissions, reduced operating costs and low noise that will expand the market for vertical flight to missions not optimally served by helicopters.

After holding the world’s first eVTOL workshop in 2014, VFS launched the world’s first e-newsletter, “The Electric VTOL News,” in 2016 when the number of known eVTOL programs under development was about a half dozen. This number quickly grew after the announcement (at the Society’s third annual eVTOL Workshop in 2016) of Uber’s Elevate initiative and the first Uber Elevate Summit in April 2017.

“We realized that there needed some way for the public to keep track of all the new innovative concepts being explored,” said VFS Director of Strategy Mike Hirschberg. “Since some innovative designs that seemed implausible at the time continued maturing into plausible approaches, we decided to catalogue every known design — from the silly to the serious.”

When the website was launched in April 2017, a total of 18 known eVTOL designs were included. All of the companies or concepts listed then are still involved today: Airbus Helicopters, Airbus A3, Aurora Flight Sciences, Bell, Carter Jaunt Aviation Technologies (now Jaunt Air Mobility), DeLorean Aerospace, Detroit Aircraft (now ASX), EHang, e-volo (now Volocopter), Jetpack Aviation (Mayman Aerospace), Joby, Kitty Hawk (now part of Wisk), Lilium, Cartivator (now SkyDrive), Uber (now part of Joby), XTI Aviation (now XTI Aerospace), Zee Aero (now Wisk) and Workhorse (now part of Moog).

Over the past seven years, designs have been added to the World eVTOL Aircraft Directory at a rapid pace, reaching 100 catalogued concepts by July 2018, 200 by September 2019, 400 by January 2021, 600 by January 2022 and 800 by April 2023. The 1,000th entry, the Doroni Aerospace H1-X two-seat personal eVTOL aircraft, was added this month.

The Directory includes not only current aircraft under development, but also historical designs, with many defunct designs preserved for the record. For instance, Volocopter is currently working on three products — VoloCity, VoloRegion and VoloDrone — but 15 different designs have been explored, including the single-seat VC007 from more than a decade ago.

Concepts are included from not only established aerospace companies and startups, but also by individuals, universities and government agencies. The free website site also hosts more than 950 eVTOL news posts, including some 400 in-depth articles from the Society’s Vertiflite magazine, the leading periodical on eVTOL and rotorcraft developments, as well as links to video recordings from conferences and short courses, and other resources.

Also included in the Society’s remit are technologies that are not uniquely applicable to vertical flight aircraft, including battery-electric, hybrid-electric and hydrogen-electric propulsion systems. Aircraft that use electric propulsion — including eVTOL and electric short- or conventional- takeoff and landing (eSTOL and eCTOL) aircraft — are broadly referred to as electric aircraft or advanced air mobility (AAM) aircraft.

In support of the broader electric aviation revolution, VFS has been sponsoring the annual Electric Aircraft Symposium (EAS) — originally started in 2007 by the CAFE Foundation — since 2018. This year’s 18th Annual EAS will once again be held online and in person in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, on July 20–21, the weekend prior to the Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA) AirVenture 2024, the world’s largest airshow and fly-in.

EAS is the world’s longest-running electric aviation technology meeting. More than 200 attendees are expected again this year. It’s organized by VFS with industry and government leaders who are part of the AAM ecosystem to provide updates to the community and the public. The focus of EAS is on technological advancements and addressing major issues like certification and infrastructure for the industry as a whole. Details on the invited speakers, registration and sponsorships are posted on the VFS website at: www.vtol.org/eas.

“The Electric Aircraft Symposium is a unique event that brings AAM experts to the world’s largest general aviation event for lively discussions on the progress and challenges of electric aviation,” said VFS Executive Director Angelo Collins. “We invite anyone interested in electric aviation to attend EAS and participate in this always-illuminating event.”

VFS was founded as the American Helicopter Society in 1943 by the visionaries of the early helicopter industry, who believed that technological cooperation and collaboration were essential to support this new type of aircraft. Today, history is repeating itself, with VFS playing a similar role helping to advance today’s revolutionary electric aircraft.

VFS holds the largest and longest-running vertical flight technical conference in the world, which next month will be its 80th Annual Forum & Technology Display on May 7–9, 2024, in Montréal, Québec, Canada: www.vtol.org/forum.

Mike Hirschberg
Vertical Flight Society
+15714991444 ext.
pr@vtol.org
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