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eVTOL aircraft emerging rapidly

The development of eVTOL Electric Vertical Takeoff & Landing is happening rather swiftly.  A number of well-established aerospace manufactures as well as newer companies have rushed to develop their own aircraft. Both industry giants Airbus and Boeing have been intensely involved in the development process. Large airlines have also committed themselves contractually to purchase a high number of these aircraft. According to the AINonline publication major agreements worth billions of US dollars already finalized. Noted in the same article, bulky orders already placed for purchase of UK’s Vertical Aerospace aircraft, currently at prototype phase.   

One of the obvious key advantages of eVTOL operated aircraft is the instant reduction of carbon emissions. The interest and investment on this type of newer emerging technologies stems mainly from the fuel-efficiency of the electrically operated vessels. In terms of civil eVTOL operations, these aircraft suggest many urban usages and roles including private use, air taxi, medical support and commercial deliveries. Personally, I wonder if the arrival of eVTOL vehicles means the replacement of traditional means of transport (i.e. lorries, trucks). Or, should we accept them as a welcoming addition to our existing air transport systems.            

We could relive supersonic travel

I recently published a blog to celebrate the life and role of the Concorde aircraft. As mentioned in the article, I now repeat that the Concorde holds an excellent chapter in air-transport’s history. This is because other than its character, the Concorde allowed ordinary people to experience supersonic travel.

However, although we thought the super-fast experience was over, here come new possibilities. A variety of independent projects and joined ventures now present new concept aircraft and futuristic travel models that bring back supersonic flying. For instance, according to United Airlines the company already announced a commercial agreement to add supersonic aircraft to its fleet. Considering the environmental challenges linked with Concorde (i.e. noise, high fuel consumption) United pledges to reach zero emissions by 2050. In addition, the refined aerodynamic design of the new aircraft could notably reduce sonic boom [thundering noise]. This aerodynamic enhancement could in turn open the prospect of supersonic travel over land areas which previously was restricted by authorities.  

Private jet travel made easy

In the past few months, there has been a steady increase on private jet travel. This relates to domestic as equally to international routes. Small and big companies now offer seats on chartered jets at reduced prices. One of the most popular choices is ‘sharing’ a flight with others, instead of chartering the aircraft and bearing the cost all by yourself.

The key factor making people to select this type of travel seems to be the pandemic related circumstances. These include the complex processes on arriving and departing but also trying to avoid the queues at airports. Similarly, many people feel that in normal operating flights the risk of close proximity with someone carrying covid-19 is higher. Therefore, they prefer to pay a greater price than to put themselves at risk. For many reasons some people defend their wish to fly on a chartered private jet rather on ordinary flight. Can be to avoid cancellations, the current travel restrictions or, arriving comfortably for your flight few minutes before departure.    

Written & Edited by Nikos Koukos

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