The Civil Aviation Authority of Singapore (CAAS) is planning to launch trials of manned electric vertical take-off and landing air taxis later this year, Channel News Asia has reported.
The trials will be conducted in cooperation with German manufacturer Velocopter which is now developing and certifying a prototype of its electric rotorcraft. The manufacturer will bring a unit to Singapore in the upcoming months and plans to launch the trials at some point in the second half of 2019.
“For the first phase, it’s very much into experimental. For a start, it is going to be over water, and we are going to work with Volocopter on the safety aspects to ensure that even flying over water, it wouldn’t pose a public or even aviation risk. The landing spot will be somewhere in the southern part of Singapore,” CAAS deputy director of transformation programmes Tan Chun Wei said.
The CAAS and Velocopter expect to launch public trials by the end of 2019.
Velocopter aims to make shared air-taxi as affordable as ride-sharing services.