November 1, 2023
A Chinese eVTOL (electric vertical takeoff and landing) vehicle maker has opened an urban air mobility (UAM) center in Spain to manage its unmanned flying vehicles.
EHang Holdings opened the center and vertiport at the Lleida–Alguaire International Airport LEDA) in Catalonia.
The UAM center includes a vertiport, which incorporates with the airport terminal, platform, control tower and airport regulations, and aims to enable the vertical takeoff and landings of electric aerial vehicles (AEV).
“The establishment of EHang’s European UAM Center marks an important step forward in the company’s international development,” said Huazhi Hu, founder, chairman and CEO of EHang. “Through this world-class UAM center, EHang expects to manifest its strong commitment with the development and deployment of UAM in Europe.
“EHang aims to share our certified and validated technology and operational experience with our partners around the world in the future to make our shared vision for benefiting all of society with safe, autonomous and eco-friendly UAM solutions.”
EHang recently received a type certificate (TC) officially issued by the Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC), granting the company permission to fly passengers in its unmanned aerial vehicles.
EHang’s EH216-S is believed to be the world’s first unmanned eVTOL two-passenger vehicle cleared for commercial use.
The air vehicle is also being deployed at the new center in Spain.
“We are especially proud of the cooperation with EHang, a leading technology company in the development of unmanned aerial vehicles in the world, to whom we are grateful for having chosen our international airport as their first European UAM Center,” said Marc Sanglas, secretary of Mobility and Infrastructure of Catalonian government in Spain.
During the EAV validation process, which included more than 40,000 test flights, the vehicle underwent laboratory, ground and flight tests at test sites across multiple locations in China, according to the company.
The tests included “structural strength, flame resistance, crashworthiness, gas toxicity, environmental conditions of equipment and systems, software simulation, data links, ground control stations, overall system functionality, electromagnetic compatibility, flight performance and flight stability characteristics,” according to the company.
The EAV company has raised $23 million in a private placement, mostly from a well-known South Korean music producer.
EHang also has a deal with the Bao’an District Government of Shenzhen municipality for a strategic partnership in urban air mobility for commercial operations of aerial vehicles following certification.
Five EHang flying cars already have been delivered to be used for aerial tourism and sightseeing experiences in Shenzhen, China. The delivery marked the start of a 100-unit order from Shenzhen Boling Holding Group.
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