Alaka'i Technologies' Skai - A Revolutionary Urban Air Mobility Solution

Alaka'i Technologies' Skai - A Revolutionary Urban Air Mobility Solution
Courtesy by Alaka'i Technologies

In addition to being mobile, the Skai eVTOL aircraft will be powered by hydrogen fuel cells. The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has approved the key flight control systems (including fly-by-light technology) since May 29, 2019. In 2021, FutureFlight claims it will be ready for series production and first deliveries due to an FAA-supported "accelerated" certification program, according to board member Dr Bruce Holmes.

A minimalist design philosophy is used in the program. Alaka'i Technology believes that this will result in a type certification process under FAR 21.17 for very light aircraft under FAA's FAR 21.17 rules. As well as improving reliability, Skai's simplicity should reduce maintenance costs. Hydrogen fuel cells can be expected to last around 20,000 flight hours between overhauls, much longer than pistons or turbines.

It has not yet published a detailed timeline for the program, but Alaka'i Technologies expects production to begin in 2021. As opposed to the urban environments that most eVTOL aircraft companies target, Skai's early customers are likely to be operators serving regional and rural markets. Before full type certification, the company expects to be able to support some trial operations with public service applications, such as the Coast Guard and National Guard.

NASA added it to its Advanced Air Mobility National Campaign on November 16, 2020. As part of NASA's "Grand Challenge" trials in 2022, Alaka'i and 18 other UAM companies will prepare to evaluate operational safety scenarios for future air mobility services (primarily collision avoidance and flight path management). Even though the company announced on December 9, 2020 that it was testing its vehicle and would provide more updates shortly, it has been silent for several months now.

As part of its efforts to find new investment partners as well as production partners, Alaka'i announced its search in September 2021.

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