There is a lot happening in the world of flying taxis, but for all the renders, working prototypes and design sketches, how exactly they will land, collect passengers and take off again is something of an unknown. Startup Volocopter will now seek to explore the possibilities around this through a newly announced partnership with Frankfurt Airport.
Some are making some exciting progress in the development of flying taxis, which would carry out short flights over busy cities to ease urban congestion. Volocopter is certainly an example of that, having carried out a string of successful test flights, including unmanned jaunt over Dubai.
We have also seen a number of concepts around the infrastructure to support this new generation of aerial vehicles, with some particularly thought-provoking examples arising from Uber's ambitions in the area. Volocopter too has shared its vision for stations where its two-seater electric aircraft would take off and land, allowing passengers to hop on and off and for its electric batteries to be swapped in and out.
Through a new partnership with Fraport AG, operator of Frankfurt Airport in Germany, it will now explore this with respect to airports. The two companies have begun developing concepts for so-called Volocopter Ports, which would be integrated into existing airport infrastructure and provide connections to local forms of urban transport.
"Autonomous flying will fundamentally change aviation in the years to come," says Anke Giesen, Fraport AG COO. "We want to be the first airport in Europe to harness the potential of electric air taxis in partnership with pioneer Volocopter – for the benefit of our passengers and the Frankfurt/Rhine-Main region. This partnership underscores Fraport AG's role as a key driver of innovation in diverse fields."
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