Archer Plans 250 Air Taxis, FAA Readies for AAM
Industry Innovation

Archer Plans 250 Air Taxis, FAA Readies for AAM

DALLAS – Archer Aviation plans to produce approximately 250 battery-electric air taxis in 2025, with production ramping up in subsequent years after achieving certification by the end of 2024.

The news comes on the heels of the US Department of Transportation (DoT) announcing 12 new appointments (see list below) to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Advanced Aviation Advisory Committee (AAAC). The new committee will give the FAA advice on key drone and Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) issues.

According to Reuters, Archer aims to certify its pilot-plus-four-passenger ‘Midnight’ aircraft by the end of 2024 while the FAA develops certification requirements for the novel aircraft.

Photo: Archer Aviation

Electric Competition

Once certified, the California-based startup’s electric Vertical Take-Off and Landing (eVTOL) aircraft will compete in a crowded market with dozens of other developers striving to reinvent urban transportation, including Joby Aviation, which secured FAA certification in May to operate Air Taxis, and Vertical Aerospace, which in July secured delivery spots and pre-delivery payments from American Airlines (AA).

Archer and United Airlines (UA) had already created an eVTOL joint advisory committee in April to exploit UA’s maintenance and operational expertise to advise Archer in the development of its all-electric composite aircraft.

Photo: Archer Aviation

Preparing the Groundwork for AAM

The embryonic sector, which is backed by giants Toyota Motor Corp and Delta Air Lines (DL), still has major hurdles to cross such as certification, building a proper air traffic control system, and improving battery technology, among others.

The FAA’s AAAC members announced by the DoT are executives and stakeholders from the drone and AAM industries, research, academia, retail, technology, and state and municipal government.

Furthermore, for the first time, the AAAC will include members capable of raising community awareness of potential consequences and advising on measures that advance developing aviation models while respecting surrounding communities.

New AAAC Members

  • Edward Bolen, Chief Executive Officer, National Business Aviation Association
  • Jeffrey Keith Antonio Brown, Aviation Chief Operating Officer, Port of Seattle
  • Kevin Cox, Chief Executive Officer, Ferrovial Vertiports
  • Karthik Duraisamy, Professor of Aerospace Engineering, University of Michigan & Founder and Chief Scientist, Geminus.AI
  • Amit Ganjoo, Founder and Chief Executive Officer, ANRA Technologies
  • James Grimsley, Executive Director, Advanced Technology Initiatives-Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma
  • Andrew LeBovidge, Executive Vice President, National Air Traffic Controllers Associations (NATCA)
  • Houston Mills, Vice President, Flight Operations and Safety, United Parcel Service (UPS) / AAAC Chair
  • Okeoma Moronu, Head of Aviation Regulatory and Legal Affairs, Zipline
  • Melissa Tomkiel, President and General Counsel, Blade Air Mobility
  • James Viola, Chief Executive Officer, Helicopter Association International
  • Yolanka Wulff, Executive Director, Community Air Mobility Initiative

Featured image: Archer Aviation

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