Hyundai Flying Vehicle Company, Korean Air Partner for eVTOL Ecosystem

The companies plan to exchange technical data and participate in workshops to help develop an ecosystem supporting eVTOL operations

Chuck Martin, Editorial Director AI & IoT

October 19, 2023

3 Min Read
Hyundai flying vehicle company Supernal's flying vehicle.

The Hyundai flying vehicle company developing eVTOL (electric vertical takeoff and landing) vehicles and Korean Air formed a strategic partnership to accelerate the design of its flying vehicle and the development of the advanced air mobility (AAM) ecosystem in Korea.

This is part of a growing network of collaborators that Supernal, a part of the Hyundai Motor Group, has been forming.

Supernal recently announced a collaboration with Honeywell to develop a ground control station to enable the vehicles to be test flown without pilots on board.

The Honeywell ground control station operation would allow for the remote test operation of AAM vehicles.

Pilots on the ground would monitor and command the aircraft beyond-visual-line-of-sight operation while also accessing real-time aircraft data.

"A core part of our strategy to advance advanced air mobility is the need for robust collaboration and partnerships with industry leaders like Korean Air," said Jaiwon Shin, president of Hyundai Motor Group and CEO of Supernal. "Korean Air's expertise in building scalable aviation systems, together with Supernal's vision for mobility, will help usher in this exciting new era of air travel and bring us closer to global AAM operations."

As part of the deal, the companies plan to exchange technical data and participate in workshops to help develop an AAM ecosystem supporting eVTOL operations. 

Related:Hyundai Flying Vehicle Company, Honeywell Team for Pilotless eVTOLs

Korean Air plans to provide insights about market requirements in Korea and AAM aircraft specifications, to aid in Supernal's product and market development strategies.

"We will cooperate in deriving requirements for eVTOL aircraft optimized for UAM operations based on Korean Air's accumulated data on aircraft operation and customer boarding experience," said Keehong Woo, CEO of Korean Air. "Based on this, we will strive to develop a business model and build an operating ecosystem suitable for Korea's environment."

Supernal is working with more than 50 additional companies to develop its eVTOL vehicle for commercial use starting in 2028.

The Honeywell ground control station technology Supernal is now working with could ultimately manage thousands of vehicles across a series of stations, according to the company.

Supernal recently opened a research and development facility in Fremont, California, to focus on developing battery technology for electric aerial vehicles (EAV).

That was the third facility opened this year by Supernal following the opening of an engineering headquarters in Irving, California, and a policy and commercial hub in Washington, D.C. 

Related:Hyundai Flying Vehicle Company Opens Research Facility

Supernal is taking an open ecosystem approach to developing lightweight, powerful batteries for EAVs.

Supernal is also working with Microsoft and BAE Systems on various elements of its EAVs.

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About the Author(s)

Chuck Martin

Editorial Director AI & IoT

Chuck Martin, author of "Flying Vehicles," New York Times Business Bestselling author and futurist, is Editorial Director at Informa Tech, home of AI Business, IoT World Today and Enter Quantum. Martin has been a leader in emerging digital technologies for more than two decades. He is considered one of the foremost emerging technology experts in the world and his latest book title "Flying Vehicles" (The Emergence of Personal Air Travel, Flying Cars, and Air Taxis) followed "Digital Transformation 3.0" (The New Business-to-Consumer Connections of The Internet of Things).  He hosts a worldwide podcast titled “The Voices of the Internet of Things with Chuck Martin,” where he converses with top executives from the companies driving the adoption of emerging technology.

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