News / Vertical Aerospace calls on UK Government to enable electric intercity flight by 2025

Vertical releases White Paper with ecosystem partners to highlight opportunities for zero emissions flight in the UK

London, UK – Vertical Aerospace (“Vertical”), the global aerospace and technology company that is pioneering electric aviation, along with its partners Virgin Atlantic, Avolon, Heathrow Airport, Skyports, and NATS today released a white paper highlighting the benefits of Advanced Aerial Mobility (AAM). AAM is a future transport enabled by electric Vertical Take-Off and Landing (eVTOL) aircraft flying from existing airports, rural locations, and new inner-city bases. Vertical has also called on the government to take action to enable the UK to seize the opportunities that this new electric mobility will bring to the country.

The Future of Advanced Aerial Mobility white paper highlights the economic and environmental benefits of electric passenger flights and highlights the improved connectivity and possible intercity routes that can open up, and level up, the UK, as well as the challenges to be overcome to enable commercial electric passenger flight in the UK.

Government statistics show that the AAM market will lift UK GDP by 1.8% by 2030 and with 88% of the UK’s aerospace jobs located out of London and the South East of England, this is a country-wide levelling up opportunity.

Vertical believes that the UK and the devolved Governments, city mayors, local authorities and regulators should commit to supporting commercial electric flight by 2025, if the UK wants to become a leader in this space and the emerging sustainable aviation industry. Many cities including Paris, LA, Osaka and Singapore have already committed to launching services by then.

Vertical is calling for:
  • A commitment for electric flight to be possible across the UK by 2025.
  • A commitment from the Department for Transport and the Civil Aviation Authority to deliver a safe operating framework by 2024, to allow commercial electric flights above London, Glasgow, Belfast, Manchester, Liverpool, Cardiff, Bristol and other UK cities. This would include a route to aircraft certification, and reforms to airspace management, aviation security and flight access for electric flight operations, as well as frameworks for certifying, regulating and licensing vertiports, charging infrastructure and pilots
  • Incentivising and supporting the construction of electric aircraft assembly and gigafactories in UK regions by 2024 to allow this emerging sustainable aviation industry to establish itself in the UK.

The white paper puts forward likely zero operating emissions flights, such as the cross-Pennine Northern Powerhouse corridor of Liverpool to Hull which is expected to cut the two-and-a-half-hour drive or three-hour train to a 50-minute hop on the Vertical’s VA-X4 eVTOL. The paper explains how the hour-and-a-half drive or near two-hour train from Cambridge, the heart of Britain’s high-tech industry, to Heathrow Airport is expected to be a 28-minute flight in the VA-X4, for an estimated £58 per passenger.

Advanced air mobility is taking off worldwide, with Vertical alone receiving up to 1,350 pre-orders for its VA-X4 aircraft, for an estimated $5.4bn, with Virgin Atlantic having pre-order options for 150 of these aircraft. Vertical is building its VA-X4 demonstrator in Britain with top-tier technical partners including Britain’s Rolls- Royce and GKN, as well as Honeywell, Microsoft and Solvay.

Stephen Fitzpatrick, CEO and Founder of Vertical, said “The UK has an opportunity to be at the forefront of electric flight and the clear benefits it will bring in improving connectivity, productivity and creating highly-skilled jobs whilst lowering both congestion and carbon emissions. The UK needs to act now to grasp this prize. Our white paper seeks to engage those stakeholders that can be a part of our electric air mobility future.”

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