The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) published the Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) Implementation Plan, establishing a framework for nationwide flying taxi operations by 2028.
The FAA said the purpose of this Implementation Plan is "limited to those engaging in passenger-carrying or cargo operations with a pilot on board." AAM is referred to as a transportation system by the agency that moves people and property by air between two points using electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft in both controlled and uncontrolled airspace.
FAA said "Innovate28" is a joint government and industry initiative allowing AAM operations "at one or more key site locations" by 2028. Those locations have yet to be determined.
"This plan shows how all the pieces will come together, allowing the industry to scale with safety as the north star," Deputy FAA Administrator Katie Thomson said in a statement.
The plan is a blueprint for making flying taxi operations "routine and predictable by maximizing the use of existing procedures and infrastructure," the FAA said. It also addresses how the agency and partners will certify aircraft and pilots, ensure pilot training, manage airspace access, develop infrastructure, and maintain security.
New eVTOL aircraft are expected to offer capabilities from multi-passenger short-range aircraft to recreational aircraft to cargo aircraft.
The FAA notes that each eVTOL will be operated by a "pilot in command" in Class B and C airspace. This means constant contact with air traffic control while complying with Visual Flight Rules and visual meteorological conditions.
Here are the highlights of the new plan to ensure flying taxis hit the skies by 2028:
- Pilots will be able to fly the new advanced mobility aircraft to and from multiple locations at the sites, using predetermined flight schedules with pilots aboard.
- Advanced air mobility aircraft likely will operate up to 4,000 feet altitude in urban and metropolitan areas, using existing or modified low altitude visual flight rules (VFR) routes where possible within controlled Class B and C airspace around major airports.
- Operators, manufacturers, state and local governments, and other stakeholders will be responsible for planning, developing and enabling heliport/vertiport infrastructure.
- Advanced air mobility will initially operate at existing heliports, commercial service airports and general aviation airports. Modifications may be necessary to install charging stations, parking zones and taxiing space.
- The electrical power grid may require upgrades to serve advanced air mobility operations.
- The FAA has an interagency agreement with the Department of Energy's National Renewable Energy Lab to determine how aircraft electrification affects a vertiport, heliport or airport's electrical grid.
- The Department of Homeland Security will determine what type of security is necessary.
- The TSA and FAA are evaluating the need for expanded cybersecurity requirements due to the use of advanced technology and operational protocols.
- The FAA will consider the environmental impacts of advanced air mobility operations, including factors such as noise, air quality, visual disturbances, and disruption to wildlife.
- The FAA will engage with airports, and local, state, and tribal communities to better understand community concerns about advanced air mobility operations, including noise and mitigations.
- Many other stakeholders, such as advanced air mobility operators and airport and vertiport operators will have important roles in community engagement
We gather from the report that eVTOLs will be operating in Class B & C airspace. A pilot's license will be needed. The airspace under 4,000 feet is about to get a lot crowded by the end of the decade.
FAA Greenlights "Limited" Flight Operations For SpaceX-Backed Flying Car https://t.co/YZDOUUYuno— zerohedge (@zerohedge) July 3, 2023
For those pre-ordering flying cars, perhaps now is the time to start researching how to obtain a private pilot's license.