NACO will further support UAP on airport land-use planning, regional vertiport network business modelling, eVTOL demand simulation and surface transport intermodal transport modelling. NACO and UAP will also explore special systems for the integration of UAP vertiports to support regulatory pathways for the first use cases: eVTOL (electric vertical take-off and landing) flights to/from airports.
NACO recognises UAP’s pioneering AirOne vertiport technology, industry-leading experience and proprietary technology as pivotal to the success of the wider adoption of vertiports in airports. UAP forecasts the total market for their vertiports at over $40 billion by 2050, with airports presenting a significant proportion of that market.
UAP specialises in compact and scalable landing/take off infrastructure for drones and eVTOL aircraft, allowing both airport and aircraft to safely transition and support the electrification of aviation. Next Gen AirOne, launched earlier this month, has a unique multi-stacked hangar that provides an 8+ stand vertiport configuration using 80% less real estate.
The MoU follows the successful pilot installation in Coventry, UK, where UAP proved its technology to a global audience.
"This is a major milestone for Urban-Air Port® in terms of shaping the future of advanced air mobility, but also for us as a business. We passed the pilot stage with our successful build in Coventry, and we have demonstrated AirOne’s commercial, as well as operational, viability with our orders from the US and recognition from industry experts and regulatory bodies for safety. NACO is one of the world’s best aviation planners and integrators, and as a valued partner, I’m delighted they see such great potential in UAPs technology and its relevance for airports around the world. I’m proud of what the team has achieved and excited to take UAP into its next phase – to enable the first routes to and from regional and international airports – paving the way with the best in the business.", said Andrea Wu, CEO, Urban-Air Port.
Within its compact footprint, UAPs “Vertical Airfield” does the heavy lifting, allowing its “aircraft carrier” technology to create greater efficiencies in operation and turnaround times. It also provides enhanced safety for passengers and pilots from the special aerodynamic characteristics of eVTOL aircraft seeking certification from regulatory bodies such as UK’s CAA, EASA and the FAA.
The multimodal hub provides aircraft command and control, charging and refuelling, cargo and passenger facilities, as well as elevated take-off and landing with 360-degree situational awareness and substantial mitigation of ground effect and noise associated with eVTOL. This represents all the ground infrastructure necessary to support safer, quieter and more sustainable advanced air mobility.
NACO, the world’s leading airport and aviation consultancy, has been one of UAP’s project partners since June 2023. UAP collaborated with NACO to define eVTOL ground infrastructure requirements for airports and other clients around the world. Ricky Sandhu, Executive Chairman of UAP previously worked with NACO on airport projects around the world while at Foster + Partners: "NACO has a deep understanding of the nuances of airport planning and masterplanning, and their experience in optimising operational efficiency for their traditional airport clients is second to none. This is precisely what we believe at UAP for our vertiport clients. Sustainability is core to both of our companies and must underpin the future of aviation in a meaningful way – this is why I’m personally thrilled to be working in closer partnership with the like-minded and immensely talented team at NACO to ensure we advance this sector in the right way, that is viable and holistically sustainable."
This landmark MoU demonstrates UAP’s leadership in next generation aviation infrastructure. AirOne will support growth in eVTOL operations at airports, ultimately connecting air taxi passengers with onward flights, as well as providing a platform for other intermodal connectivity to support airports’ growth and accessibility.
UAP’s vertiports can be deployed in urban, suburban and even rural sites, but airports will likely become the first commercial locations. UAPs next gen AirOne is modular and designed to be tailored to provide safe, secure enclosure for a broad spectrum of climates. It is agnostic to aircraft type and charging / refueling system and provision for asymmetry in the corresponding flight schedule of the vertiports, in sync with the airports’ main operations, so there are no limits to its global potential. UAP’s leadership has been in discussion with clients around the world.
"We are thrilled to be exploring the possibilities around electric flight such as eVTOL with Urban-Air Port®. The team has a huge amount of experience in developing facilities for this kind of technology – particularly with the launch of the world’s first fully operational vertiport in Coventry in the UK – and we look forward to bringing our global experience in airport masterplanning and urban mobility to help develop sustainable air transportation and intermodal solutions fit for the future.", said Esther Kromhout, CEO, NACO.