Urban Transport

Transcend Air and Lily Helipads team up to build eco-friendly "vertipads" for air taxis

Vertipads are initially being planned for Boston, Manhattan, Montreal and San Francisco
Vertipads are initially being planned for Boston, Manhattan, Montreal and San Francisco
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Vertipads are initially being planned for Boston, Manhattan, Montreal and San Francisco
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Vertipads are initially being planned for Boston, Manhattan, Montreal and San Francisco
The planned location of two Vertipads (center) in Boston Harbor
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The planned location of two Vertipads (center) in Boston Harbor
The Vy pivots from an aircraft capable of helicopter-style take off and landing (albeit with two main overhead rotors rather than one) to one capable of cruising at 405 mph (652 km/h) by virtue of its tilt-wing design
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The Vy pivots from an aircraft capable of helicopter-style take off and landing (albeit with two main overhead rotors rather than one) to one capable of cruising at 405 mph (652 km/h) by virtue of its tilt-wing design

It was about a year ago that we first heard about Transcend Air Corporation's Vy 400, a planned vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) six-seater aircraft that will ferry passengers in and out of cities. Now, the Boston-based company has announced plans for floating environmentally-friendly landing pads for the aircraft.

Known as "vertipads," the barge-based landing spots are being developed in a partnership between Transcend and Indiana's Lily Helipads. According to Transcend, a network of the pads will be installed on bodies of water adjacent to city centers – planned locations include Boston Harbor, the Manhattan waterfront, Montreal's riverfront, and San Francisco Bay.

Each vertipad will be entirely solar-powered, and will use that power for a patented LED take-off and landing lighting system, along with a heating system that melts away snow and ice. The pads will reportedly also be crash- and hurricane-proof, plus they will incorporate a fluid runoff capture system, that keeps liquids such as de-icer and fuel from entering the water.

The Vy pivots from an aircraft capable of helicopter-style take off and landing (albeit with two main overhead rotors rather than one) to one capable of cruising at 405 mph (652 km/h) by virtue of its tilt-wing design
The Vy pivots from an aircraft capable of helicopter-style take off and landing (albeit with two main overhead rotors rather than one) to one capable of cruising at 405 mph (652 km/h) by virtue of its tilt-wing design

And on the topic of fuel, the Vy aircraft will not be electric … at least, not at first.

"They will be turbine-powered initially, burning SAJF (sustainable alternative jet fuel), which is a biodiesel/Jet-A blended fuel from renewable sources that reduces sulphur dioxide emissions by 80 percent and nitrogen oxide and carbon dioxide by 20 percent," Transcend COO Peter Schmidt tells us. "We have carefully designed the aircraft so we can electrify the fleet when electric tech advances far enough."

The company plans to launch its air taxi service – incorporating the vertipads – in 2024. And it should be noted that the Vy 400 will also be able to utilize existing conventional helipads.

Source: Transcend Air Corporation

3 comments
vince
Epic fail not being electric. Others will be electric.
Nelson Hyde Chick
I can just imagine how much louder city living will become once the air is full of rich people using air taxis!!!
ljaques
Air taxis and drones will add tens of decibels to urban and suburban living, I fear.