In November 2019, Vahana took its final test flight at the Pendleton UAS Range in Oregon, USA, bringing the flagship programme to a close. The team tackled three main objectives, all of which were completed over the course of the project.
- All-electric vertical flight: The project team architected an all-electric propulsion system for a tilt-wing aircraft configuration. The flight testing programme culminated in over 13 hours of flight time, totalling almost 500 nautical miles.
- Autonomy: The project team de-risked the core elements of autonomy, including real-time, detect-and-avoid capabilities for both airborne and ground-based hazards.
- eVTOL business case: Vahana offered rich learnings on the total operating costs of and certification requirements for eVTOLs, all of which is critical for creating a compelling business case.
All of these learnings will be applied to the next iteration of urban mobility vehicles at Airbus.