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KSA: NEOM has achieved a significant milestone in the field of urban air mobility by successfully testing Volocopter aircraft and conducting the first Vertical Take-Off and Landing technology (eVTOL) flight in Saudi Arabia.

The partnership between NEOM and Volocopter, a leading pioneer in urban air mobility (UAM), has paved the way for this groundbreaking achievement. For the first time in Saudi Arabia, an eVTOL aircraft received special flight authorization and performed test flights, demonstrating the immense potential of eVTOL technology.

The comprehensive flight test campaign, spanning over a week, was the result of 18 months of collaboration between NEOM, the General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA), and Volocopter. Their collective aim was to establish an electric UAM ecosystem and a testbed in NEOM.

Abdulaziz Al-Duailej, the President of GACA, expressed his satisfaction with the safe and successful test flight, considering it a significant milestone for the Saudi aviation sector.

Moreover, representing NEOM, CEO Nadhmi Al-Nasr emphasized the fact that the successful test flight of the Volocopter eVTOL marked another significant step towards realizing NEOM’s vision for an innovative, sustainable, and multimodal transportation system.

Furthermore, Christian Bauer, Volocopter’s CCO, also expressed his excitement at witnessing the fruition of their 18-month collaboration.

Volocopter’s eVTOL Models

Volocopter’s eVTOLs will play a vital role in NEOM’s smart and sustainable multimodal mobility system, powered entirely by renewable energy from solar and wind sources. These aircraft will serve as air taxis and emergency response vehicles. Additionally, compared to traditional helicopters, they offer advantages such as reduced noise, greater adaptability, and lower operational costs, amongst others.

The successful test flight announcement further solidifies NEOM’s leadership in future mobility solutions and builds upon its EUR 175 million investment and joint venture with Volocopter. Volocopter plans to obtain type certification for its VoloCity air taxi in 2024, setting the stage for future commercial operations.

This information was obtained from a report published by the Saudi Gazette.