Aviation

Vertical’s Cervenka calls for global collaboration on AAM

Vertical Aerospace President Michael Chervenka warned that until the US and Europe can agree on policy, regulation and global cooperation, neither will be able to take a leading role in advanced air mobility (AAM). Instead, Asia will lead the way, Chervenka told attendees Wednesday at the Honeywell Air Mobility Summit 2022 in Washington, D.C.

“The megatrend, the biggest market opportunities will be in Asia, and that’s where we’re going to focus,” he said. Chervenka addressed comments made throughout the day about what is needed to make AAM a reality and how the U.S. can take a leadership role in that effort.

Noting that he’s been in the eVTOL field for seven years, Chervenka said he’s seen “this world go from hype” to one where “people don’t wonder, ‘Is this going to happen’ anymore.” Is it real?” Now people are asking how it can be done safely, he said. “From our perspective, it’s absolutely the ecosystem and collaboration that will make this possible.”

As for the US market leadership, he noted that while it is indeed an important market, it represents about 20 percent of the forecast for future eVTOLs. “So if the U.S. wants to be a leader, it needs to take a truly global perspective.”

As Vertical is based in Bristol, UK, he added that the company comes from a global collaboration perspective and has adopted a partnership approach. “We’re very focused on developing a world-class four-passenger manned eVTOL, but we’re doing it as part of an ecosystem,” he said, noting that Honeywell was his first industrial partner.

“I strongly believe it’s a partnership between new startups and incumbents that have it all [research and development] pipelines, industrial capabilities and certification capabilities are how we are going to transform this industry,” he said, listing Rolls-Royce, Solvay, GKN and Microsoft as partners.

He noted that the company has sold about 1,400 of its VX4s, including to major leasing companies, airlines and air tour operators, as well as business jet and helicopter operators. These sales were in North and South America, Europe and Asia. “It’s a truly global opportunity.”

However, aligning regulation and policy around the world is a challenge. Lessors are concerned about the portability of their assets, which makes this alignment even more important.

Pointing to EASA and the FAA, he said: “It is surprising to me that there is currently a dislocation between these two organisations. They come from different philosophies, different principles and different appetites for risk.” But if you are a leasing company, you care about being able to sell eVTOLs to US and European operators.

https://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/business-aviation/2022-09-22/verticals-cervenka-urges-global-collaboration-aam Vertical’s Cervenka calls for global collaboration on AAM

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