(UAM/AAM) Vertiports

Electric Vertical Take-Off and Landing air vehicle (eVTOL) are emerging and will certainly revolutionize urban mobility in the coming decades.

Potential growth is also dependent on three main external factors: overall growth of the aviation market; availability and cost of renewable energy; and the overall price for RAM compared to other modes of transportation.

We have identified two potential trajectories for the RAM market, which vary according to the development of the macroeconomic environment. This will depend heavily on whether the industry can drive down costs. Succeed and RAM (short- and long-distance) can become a mass-market form of mobility.

The Advanced Aviation Infrastructure Modernization Act would authorize federal funding for grants to state and local entities that wish to plan or construct new infrastructure to support AAM deployment.

Including language to ensure that safety remains a top priority when evaluating grant submissions and requiring that plans for new AAM “vertiport” infrastructure must consider any potential conflicts that could arise with respect to existing aviation infrastructure.

According to the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (“EASA”), the basic definition of a vertiport is “an area of land, water, or structure used or intended to be used for the landing and take-off of Vertical Take-Off and Landing aircraft.”

In other words, vertiports are areas dedicated to groups of electric aircraft that allow advanced services to support urban air mobility of both passengers and goods. Thus, vertiports also include all the tools that enable the implementation of such purposes, such as ticketing systems, secure boarding procedures, and charging facilities.

The ecosystem supporting aircraft is now particularly attractive to private and public investors due to several features: energy efficiency, low noise pollution, environmental friendliness, and the eventual possibility of unmanned flight. Indeed, at the moment urban air mobility seems to be the most promising solution to urban traffic problems and to meeting the objective of carbon reduction by 2030.

As a result, IAMI's, and more than 200 companies are currently working on Vertiport projects. Industry actors are innovating to ensure that these technologies will be available in cities, thanks to vertical take-off and landing systems (“VTOL”), electric propulsion, and advanced flight control capability.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has released new design guidelines for vertiport infrastructure to support advanced air mobility (AAM) aircraft.

These design standards provide key information to enable airport owners, operators and infrastructure developers to begin constructing infrastructure for electrically-powered vertical take-off and land (eVTOL) aircraft.

Some of the use cases for these vehicles could be to transport passengers or cargo at lower altitudes in rural, urban and suburban areas.

Associate Administration for Airports: “Our country is stepping into a new era of aviation. These vertiport design standards provide the foundation needed to begin safely building infrastructure in this new era.”

The design standards include initial information that designers and builders should follow to priorities safe take-offs and landings.

The FAA has provided safety-critical geometry and design elements, such as dimensions for vertiport touchdown and liftoff areas and the requirements for additional airspace for approach and departure paths.

In addition, the guidelines provide standards for lighting, markings and visual aids. To identify the facility as a vertiport, the FAA recommends using the vertiport identification symbol.

Federal Aviation Administration, Initial safety standards have also been established for charging and electric infrastructure that will be key to support the electrically-powered aircraft.

Furthermore, the guidelines provide specific requirements for different types of vertiports. This includes standards for airports looking to add vertiports to an existing commercial airport – for example, the distance a vertiport would have to be from a current runway.

In addition, it provides requirements and guidelines for elevated vertiports that may be placed on top of existing structures in urban environments.

This vertiport guidance will be used until performance-based vertiport design guidance can be developed. … The full guidelines can be viewed, here.