Our Charge 2017-10-07T04:49:59+00:00
OUR CHARGE

Life on your terms

We may be in aviation, but we also build dreams. In the new era we are bringing to life, there is freedom: to live where you want to live, quickly get where you need to go, and to travel on your own schedule. Freedom from long drives to airport hubs, lengthy lines and waits, inconvenient flight times, noise and emissions.

Flights on your schedule from thousands of airports that get you to your destination two to four times faster at a fraction of the cost. A quick drive to a nearby airport where you can walk onto quiet, electric aircraft much as you would board a bus today, for a fast flight to an airport closer than ever to your destination — all while leaving neighbors undisturbed and the planet healthy.

Fast, affordable and everywhere

Our range-optimized hybrid-to-electric aircraft bring airliner economics to mid-sized aircraft, traveling over ranges from 700 miles in the early 2020s to over 1,000 miles by 2030. Flying point-to-point to thousands of secondary airports and feeders to hubs, the hybrids will power a distributed air system that complements the concentrated airliners and hubs of today. This will provide high-speed connectivity to every community, and bring fast, flexible, much more personalized travel to us all.

Get there on your schedule
Travel 2 to 4 times faster door-to-door, with departures from nearby airports, and walk-on, walk-off services much like boarding a bus or a train.
Much lower fares
Our range-optimized hybrids bring airliner economics to mid-sized regional aircraft, reducing fares between 40 and 80 percent.
Fly to every community
Services to 5,000+ secondary airports in the US alone, and another 5,000 around the world.
Tread lightly
Quiet electric propulsion cuts community and cabin noise by 75%, emissions by 80%, which means that by the 2030s we can eliminate 40% of all commercial aviation emissions.

Closing the vast regional transport gap

Over the past 70 years, the jet age has connected our world as never before. The miles we fly have doubled every 15 years, from 1 trillion in 1980 toward a forecast 13 trillion in 2030, while the cost of flying has halved over the last 30 years. Powering this boom is a long-term shift of the global fleet to large airliners, longer ranges, and a shrinking set of major hubs.

The effect on regional fleets has been dramatic. Aircraft sizes on regional stages have quadrupled, from 20 seats in 1980 to roughly 80 seats today, with steep reductions in frequency of service and of destinations served. This has had a chilling impact, with:

96%

of air traffic in just 1%  of 13,500 airports

70%

of time on sub-1,000 mile air trips on the ground

96%

of trips under 1,000 miles by auto

This dynamic has created one of the greatest challenges in transportation today, which is a transport gap over regional distances. Thousands of communities have poor or no access to high-speed travel: infrequent flights, few destinations and high fares. Where access is better, door-to-door times have not improved for decades. Meanwhile, alternatives like high-speed rail (or even the hyperloop) are limited by economics to a few high-density corridors.

“We envision a short-haul system capable of operating from every runway and urban area V/STOL port in the United States and very comfortable in an environmental sense.”

John Shaffer, FAA Administrator, 1970

Democratizing access to high speed travel

Our aircraft are designed to operate in a regional air system that will be very different from the jet-economics-driven hub and spoke model of today. Scale-independent hybrids will create an air system in their own image: one that is much more distributed, with aircraft of a wide range of sizes providing fast, frequent service to large numbers of communities. Moreover, much of the infrastructure required for such an air system is falling into place, enabling the mode to emerge rapidly.

Airport stock
There are 13,500 under-utilized airports in the US, 2,500 in the EU, and similar stocks covering the Americas, Europe, parts of Asia, and Africa. Moreover, many hubs have space for non-interfering short runways that support feeder operations.
All-weather operations
A major upgrade of air traffic control systems due to be completed by 2022 enables this at scale via GPS flight paths and onboard ADS-B: NextGen in the US, SESAR in the EU, and OpenSky in Australia.
Airside recharge and swap
Airports will need to be equipped for battery recharge or swap, a relatively modest build given the vast roll-out already underway to support ground electric vehicles.
Regulatory framework
Work on regulation for the certification of electric aircraft under FAA Part 23 has been underway since 2014, and is on track to be completed by the end of 2018.