Neom and Volocopter complete electric taxi flights in Saudi

Neom, the smart and sustainable regional development in northwest Saudi Arabia, and the urban air mobility (UAM) firm Volocopter, have announced successful completion of a series of air taxi test flights.

According to Neom, this marks the first time an eVTol (electric vertical take-off and landing) aircraft has received a special flight authorisation and performed test flights in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

Electric UAM ecosystem

The flight test campaign lasted over a week and built on 18 months of collaboration between Neom, the General Authority of Civil Aviation (GACA), and Volocopter, with the aim of implementing and scaling an electric UAM ecosystem and testbed in Neom.

The parties worked closely to ensure full regulatory compliance and safety ahead of the test campaign.

“This safe and successful test flight represents an important milestone of the Saudi aviation sector and another steady step towards achieving the aviation sector’s strategy, through innovation and employing emerging technologies to create new industries that contribute to the output GDP and create more jobs,” said Abdulaziz Al-Duailej, president of the General Authority of Civil Aviation of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

“It also confirms GACA’s commitment to enabling the safe integration of innovative air transport patterns that improve the mobility experience of individuals in urban areas and the quality of life in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.”

Neom and Volocopter said they share a joint vision of creating a better future through innovative, clean technology. As part of a multimodal transport system, electric air mobility reflects Neom’s ambition to revolutionise mobility and transform people’s lives.

In 2021, Neom and Volocopter founded a joint venture to scale advanced air mobility, positioning Neom as a collaborative, global living lab for the future of transportation.

The test campaign focused on the flight performance of the Volocopter aircraft in local climate and environmental conditions, as well as testing its integration into the local unmanned aircraft system traffic management (UTM) system.

Read more: