Vertical Aerospace Completes First Wheels Up Test Flight

Vertical VX4 electric
Photo Credit: Vertical Aerospace

LONDON – The UK Company Vertical Aerospace has today become the first British company in over 20 years to bring a new aircraft into the skies. With the company completed their first test flight with its electric VX4 prototype.

Major Mile Stone

Chief Test Pilot, Justin Paines took the controls for the aircraft’s maiden take off which saw the eight sets of propellers lift the aircraft from the ground into a low hover, with the aircraft also being tethered to the ground for the safety of both everyone involved.

The aircraft was given out a special permit to fly from the UK’s Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), with the aircraft now expected to be fully certified by 2025 following a successful flight testing period.

Chief Test Pilot, Justin Paines said: “This test represented the culmination of many months of preparation by a huge team and being at the controls of the VX4 for the first time was an honour and a proud moment for us all.”

The purpose of having a pilot inside the aircraft for the first flight was done for two main reasons. Number one is that it showed the aircraft meets the standard safety requirements that it will need to should it ever wish to enter commercial service. The second reason was likely the company’s desire to show its customers that the project has the ability to prove fruitful.

Virtual Aerospace current has 1,400 conditional pre-orders from some of the world’s largest airlines and lessors, with Virgin Atlantic, American Airlines, Japan Airlines and Air Asia among the more notable companies with orders.

Stephen Fitzpatrick, Founder & CEO of Vertical, said: “This moment represents a small step for Vertical Aerospace, but it’s a giant leap forward for British aviation.”

“For more than 100 years the UK has been a global leader in aviation and today, in the 21st century, Britain is leading the world in the development of zero carbon aircraft.”

Never Been A Greater Demand

This announcement today will also be very welcome news to many other companies such as transporters like Uber, with the demand for lower carbon-free travel now becoming bigger and bigger, as climate change affects more countries and people around the globe.

Even today easyJet laid out its new roadmap to be completely carbon neutral by 2050 as it works with Rolls Royce to retrofit its entire fleet with their new hydrogen engines, which are due to conduct testing soon.

In a study which drove the easyJet decision, it is understood that 76% of British people who took part in the poll, feel that companies now must urgently sort out everything they need to achieve net-zero carbon.

A Strong case has been made partially during the COVID-19 pandemic which saw in some areas wildlife and planet welfare begin to recover as the travel industries were forced to stop operating, this has done nothing now except put the importance of the situation to the forefront on not just the aviation industry but the whole travel and tourism sector.

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