Flying is one of the most complicated and expensive businesses. The demand for this service is indeed growing.
Sometimes even passengers can have a hard time flying. Tight schedules, super packed flights, and increasing tickets costs are becoming a primary reason for people to look at alternatives when it comes to travel, especially cars.
This situation has encouraged companies to look at potential alternatives for air-travel and similar unique yet straightforward solutions.
The idea here is to invest in small airports to develop an air-taxi network that works in the same airspace of major airlines, is less expensive to run and has a large variety of routes available for its customers.
Vertical Take-off and Landing (VTOL)
Many major companies are pushing the boundaries even further when it comes to future of flying. As it is assumed that air taxis would be a pretty expensive solution for regular customers and airports as they still have to be located outside major cities. To find the perfect solution to these problems, corporations are investing significant funds in Vertical Take-off and Landing (VTOL), mainly known to be a new generation vehicle, similar to helicopters as they also take off and land vertically.
The implementation of this kind of vehicles or VTOL has enormous benefits like:
- They could solve the problem of decongestion of road networks in major cities
- Their medium-range (up to 150 miles) could support people to complete journeys between large towns
- They could also use a hybrid, if not completely green power systems
Companies developing VTOL Aircrafts
With the excellent understanding of the benefits of VTOL, many companies are developing VTOL Aircrafts like:
- Texas-based Bell Helicopter is one of the known names as they recently revealed the cabin of their self-piloting air taxi which the company. They have also been rumored to supply it to Uber sometime around 2020. The company has been extremely secretive about the technology that will enable this vehicle to fly. All that is known about it is that the air taxi would take off and land like a helicopter (VTOL), but it would fly with wings like any other conventional plane.
- Another interesting but also very secretive company is the California-based JobyAviations. JobyAviations has not shared any information relating to the technology behind its five-seater all-electric passenger plane and claims to have an excellent 150-mile range and very quiet flying experience including take off.
- The least shy company about its product is Airbus Vahana. The company has shared a video of a successful test flight of its electric vertical take-off and landing autonomous drone publically. Their test was a short one that lasted only 53 seconds but was extremely important as the vehicle was powered entirely by electricity.
The Future of Air Taxis and VTOL
The technology of air taxis is yet at an early stage and therefore is facing many essential problems. This new way of travel is only going to become a reality after considering all the significant worries relating to the overall travel experience, safety issues, and price.
However, it still is undoubtedly the most exciting time for the industry as it is continuously being pushed towards a more sustainable and greener way of travel.