Hans Christian Anderson (HCA) Airport in Odense and Copenhagen Helicopter are partnering to build infrastructure for electrically-powered flying taxis to transport people between Denmark’s largest cities.
Before the summer, the first flying taxi is expected to be launched over Funen, and the end-goal is to establish a landing site on top of Odense Station.
The Danish partnership between HCA Airport in Odense and the company Copenhagen Helicopter ApS will now take the first steps towards getting eVTOL aircraft into Danish airspace. The goal is to be able to show a flying taxi at HCA Airport before the summer, and in the slightly longer term, the ambition is to establish one or more landing sites, also known as vertiports, the first at the top of Odense Railway Station.
HCA Airport Chairman Kim Kenlev, said: “I foresee that in a few years’ time you can take the light rail to Odense Station and from there take a flying taxi to Copenhagen or other Danish cities. Now is the time to start building a brand new infrastructure based initially on manned flying taxis that fly on green power and contribute to the government’s goal of achieving 100% green domestic transport by 2030.”
He added: “I see nothing stopping us from flying to cities like Gothenburg, Hamburg or Berlin in the future. Advanced Air Mobility is high on the agenda everywhere, and these cities are within reach of these flying taxis.”
Initially, the partnership wants to attract foreign AAM operators to HCA Airport, which already hosts an internationally recognized drone test centre, UAS Denmark Test Center. This could be in the form of testing and demonstration activities or, in the longer term, service and maintenance.
CEO of Copenhagen Helicopter, Martin Andersen, commented: “Advanced Air Mobility is based on a new revolution in aviation that says goodbye to fossil fuels in favour of electrification and biofuels – which we already know from the transition from traditional cars to hybrid and electric cars and later self-driving cars. It offers a whole new opportunity to transport people on a daily basis via the skies, while reducing greenhouse gas emissions, reducing noise levels and much more.”
The Municipality of Odense is thought to share the goal for establishing more sustainable modes of transport and for setting high standards in order to be the first to develop new technologies.
Mayor of Odense Municipality, Peter Rahbæk Juel, said: “This could well be the beginning of what will be a whole new way of transporting ourselves and goods in the future. We can see that other countries and cities are already way ahead, and Denmark and Odense must of course also follow this trend. The flying taxis of the future can fly on green power produced by Danish offshore wind turbines, and they can help shift traffic away from the roads.”
He added: “Funen’s robotics adventure began with some talented engineers from the University of Southern Denmark and a city that dared to think big and take a risk. In the same way, I see this as the first steps towards a new business venture that will hopefully generate jobs, contribute to the green transition and create a whole new way of transporting people.”