Eve Holding, Inc. will conduct its first North American urban air mobility (UAM) simulation using helicopters powered by Blade Air Mobility, Inc., as a substitute for an electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL). The company aims to study operations, ground services, passenger journeys and eVTOL operator needs, creating more accessible and faster connections to Downtown Chicago. Eve will conduct its Chicago, Illinois, UAM simulation over three weeks, starting with ground tests on 12 September and passenger flights on the 14th. Following the simulation, the city of Chicago will gain knowledge about the infrastructure and ecosystem needed to enable the launch and expected long-term growth of UAM in the area.
Eve will perform the ground tests at Vertiport Chicago, an existing downtown heliport facility, simulating services, infrastructure, and equipment requirements for the eVTOL. In the UAM infrastructure, a vertiport is an area of land or a structure used for the landing, take-off, charging and operation of eVTOL vehicles.
“Simulating the eVTOL operation in Chicago allows us to study how people will experience this service and understand the entire ecosystem requirements for our product and services, while showcasing the benefit of Urban Air Mobility in one of North America’s most prominent and populated cities,” said André Stein, co-CEO of Eve. ”We are wrapping up preparations to execute these simulations seamlessly and look forward to helping prepare Chicago for a local zero-emission UAM solution that is quiet, efficient, and sustainable.”
For this simulation, Eve has formed a consortium of partners, including Blade, Republic Airways, Halo Aviation, Vertiport Chicago, Village of Tinley Park, Village of Schaumburg, ACCIONA, SkyWest, Inc. and Speedbird Aero. A helicopter replicating Eve’s future eVTOL will transport passengers from the Vertiport Chicago facility to two helistops located northwest and southwest of Chicago. The first route will connect Vertiport Chicago to Schaumburg Municipal Helistop, and the second route will connect Vertiport Chicago to Tinley Park Helistop in Illinois.