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FAA Issues Plans for Air Taxis and eVTOLs scaling up US Operations by 2028

FAA Issues Plans for Air Taxis and eVTOLs scaling up US Operations by 2028

The FAA published an implementation plan outlining the actions it and others need to take to securely permit enhanced air mobility operations in the near future. The “Innovate28” plan outlines numerous elements and the order in which they must take place for operations to be at scale at one or more sites by 2028.

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The strategy will maximize the utilization of current practices and infrastructure to make entry into service normal and predictable. It describes how the organization and its allies would certify aircraft and pilots, control access to airspace, guarantee pilot training, build infrastructure, uphold security, and include communities.

Today’s broad effort follows the agency releasing its airspace blueprint and proposing a comprehensive rule for training and certifying pilots to fly these aircraft.

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The plan’s highlights include:

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Operations

  • Pilots will be able to fly the new advanced mobility aircraft to and from multiple locations at the sites, using predetermined flight schedules with pilots aboard. 
  • Advanced air mobility aircraft likely will operate up to 4,000 feet altitude in urban and metropolitan areas, using existing or modified low altitude visual flight rules (VFR) routes where possible within controlled Class B and C airspace around major airports. 

Infrastructure

  • Infrastructure design, development, and implementation will be the responsibility of operators, manufacturers, state and local governments, and other stakeholders.
  • Initial operations of advanced air mobility will take place at already-existing heliports, commercial service airports, and general aviation airports. Installation of charge stations, parking spaces, and taxi lanes might require modifications.

Power Grid

  • To support sophisticated air mobility operations, the electrical power grid may need to be upgraded.
  • The FAA and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory of the Department of Energy have an interagency agreement to study how the electrification of aircraft impacts vertiport, heliport, and airport electrical grids.

Environment

  • The FAA will take into account elements like noise, air quality, visual disturbances, and disruption to wildlife when determining the environmental effects of advanced air mobility operations.

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