Embraer and Uber launch air taxi concept


Embraer has revealed the air taxi concept it is developing in partnership with Uber.

The electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft is being developed by EmbraerX, a subsidiary company to Embraer which aims to “enable and accelerate the urban mobility ecosystem”.

The partnership between taxi-service company Uber and Embraer was initially announced in 2017. Uber also has partnerships with Bell, electric-aircraft maker Pipistrel, Boeing subsidiary Aurora Flight Sciences and NASA to develop aircraft or aspects of managing increased amounts of air traffic in urban environments.

EmbraerX launched the eVTOL at the Uber Elevate Summit 2019 in Washington, D.C. Speaking at the event, Antonio Campello, president and CEO of EmbraerX said, “We have been combining human-centered design thinking with our 50-year history of building and engineering expertise to this new eVTOL concept.”

The new aircraft concept also aims at operational optimization for the urban environment with high reliability, low operating costs, a lower noise footprint, fully electric-powered and will be progressively autonomous.

Mark Moore, engineering director of aviation at Uber said, “Embraer has focused on the customer experience with their latest vehicle concept, using built-in redundant systems to achieve optimal safety, while also achieving low noise output with an eight rotor system, which enables spanwise lift. Our team looks forward to continued collaboration with the Embraer team to achieve a quiet, green, and safe, aerial ridesharing vehicle.”

EmbraerX is also involved n a project called Beacon, a business platform designed to foster collaboration between aviation services companies and professionals. It is also working with air traffic controllers, academics, pilots and industry experts, to develop systems to manage urban air spaces.

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Ben has worked as a journalist and editor, covering technology, engineering and industry for the last 20 years. Initially writing about subjects from nuclear submarines to autonomous cars to future design and manufacturing technologies, he was editor of a leading UK-based engineering magazine before becoming editor of Aerospace Testing in 2017.

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