A new battery-powered air taxi has travelled 250KM in the world’s longest eVTOL flight on a single charge of lithium-ion batteries.
The flight, which took place at AutoFlight’s eVTOL (electric Vertical Take Off and Landing) testing facility on February 23th, consisted of 20 circuits on a predefined flight track, with the plane remotely piloted from the ground by AutoFlight’s Flight Test team. Interestingly, while AutoFlight’s Gen4 aircraft is fitted with the latest in state-of-the-art avionics, the aircraft also ran third-party avionics to record and verify the distance flown on ForeFlight, an independent system widely used in the aviation sector.
The flight is recognised as the longest fully electric aircraft flight in history, where the aircraft both takes off and lands vertically. This long-range test flight is a key milestone in the development of the Prosperity I aircraft, as it undergoes continued testing towards the company’s goal of airworthiness certification in 2025 with EASA.
“This flight is both a great celebratory milestone, and a testament to the team’s incredible effort and progress in testing and incrementally pushing the aircraft’s performance envelope,” said AutoFlight’s president Omer Bar-Yohay. “It’s a remarkable achievement that shows our aircraft’s capability, and we are excited to continue working towards our next goals all the way to EASA certification in 2025.”
The aircraft used in this record flight is the world’s first look at AutoFlight’s newest Generation 4 model, which was penned by legendary designer Frank Stephenson. Frank’s vehicle design portfolio includes iconic successes from brands including Ferrari, Maserati, McLaren, MINI and now AutoFlight.
AutoFlight’s Prosperity aircraft is a state-of-the-art electric aircraft that uses rotors to lift the aircraft vertically for takeoff, then transitions to horizontal flight on the wing (like a traditional airplane). The aircraft is capable of speeds in excess of 200KMH, over a range greater than 250KM. AutoFlight is one of only a few eVTOL OEM’s to have mastered the challenging ‘transition phase’ from vertical to horizontal flight and have done so hundreds of times, clocking thousands of flight miles on multiple iterations of their aircraft.
AutoFlight is a global high-tech startup dedicated to developing and manufacturing electric aerial vehicles to provide safe and reliable logistics systems and urban air mobility solutions for people. AutoFlight uses its experience with artificial intelligence, 5G, breakthrough materials, and advanced manufacturing in the drone market to drive developments in the eVTOL industry. The company has a diversified eVTOL product mix, focusing on large-scale logistics aircraft and passenger aerial vehicles.