October 26, 2023
The Archer Midnight vehicle is designed to carry a pilot and four passengers with the intent of making rapid back-and-forth flights, with short battery charging times in between.
Archer’s stated goal is to replace car trips of up to 90 minutes with electric air taxi flights of up to 20 minutes.
“This next phase of Archer’s flight test program is only possible because of the four years of flight testing we’ve done,” said Archer founder and CEO Adam Goldstein. “Midnight is building on the successes of its predecessor aircraft and represents another significant step forward in Archer’s path to commercialization. The next year and a half will be focused on continuing to rapidly advance our flight test program and Archer’s electric air taxi operations as we prepare to bring Midnight to market in 2025.”
Archer plans to begin official testing of Midnight, working to meet the requirements of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).
Archer recently signed agreements to build a high-volume manufacturing facility for its electric aerial vehicle (EAV).
Construction has already begun on the 350,000-square-foot facility supporting production of up to 650 aircraft annually, believed to be the largest EAV aircraft manufacturing facility by volume.
Another flying taxi company, Joby Aviation, recently selected Dayton, Ohio, for its large-scale aircraft production facility to deliver up to 500 EAVs a year.
That site is large enough to build up to 2 million square feet of manufacturing space.
The first phase of the Archer facility is scheduled to be completed in 2024, with the planned flying vehicle entry into service in 2025.
The next phase at the location would include the capability to expand to 900,000 square feet to support making more than 2,000 aircraft per year.
Archer has partnered with Honeywell and Safran for a majority of its Midnight aircraft components.
Archer recently received the first $1 million as part of a $142 million deal with the U.S. Air Force, which is working with Archer to assess the eVTOL vehicle market and technologies for Department of Defense purposes.
Archer recently received a new round of funding of $215 million, bringing the total investment in its EAV development to $1.1 billion.
That funding came from investors including Boeing, United Airlines, Stellantis and Ark Investment Management.
The Archer EAV is designed to carry 1,000 pounds with a low noise profile.
Archer also is working with United Airlines and last year received a $10 million pre-delivery payment from United for 100 aircraft, according to the company.
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