Your next ride-share could be an aircraft – Here’s how NASA is making it happen

Typically when you think of ride-sharing, Uber and Lyft come to mind. However, one company is looking to take ride-sharing to new heights, quite literally. Archer Aviation is working toward the commercialization of aerial ride-sharing, and a recent partnership with NASA brings them one step closer to reaching that goal. CEO Adam Goldstein sat down with TheStreet to discuss how his company plans to accomplish this.

Full Video Transcript Below:

ADAM GOLDSTEIN: So we are building electric, vertical takeoff and landing aircraft to be used in urban air mobility. So think about trips on the ground that will take you 90 minutes, 120 minutes by car. We can replace in the air with a 5 to 10 minute trip. And that’s the product we’re bringing to market. The goal is to be in market commercialized in 2025. So we’re at the final stages of the certification process with the FAA and excited to be here to talk about it. 

J.D. DURKIN: How does this compare to, let’s say, maybe the closest comparison people might be able to visualize helicopters. They see them buzzing around the city. Talk to me about what your product is, how it’s similar, maybe how it’s different? 

ADAM GOLDSTEIN: When you electrify the vehicles there are substantial benefits that you get that make these vehicles far superior to helicopters. So the first one is really around safety. You can create a vehicle that has zero single points of failure versus helicopters will have 200 to 300 single points of failure. So you’re certifying these vehicles at a safety standard as high as the big commercial planes that we know today. The second thing is around noise. So you can make these vehicles where they’re very, very quiet. And when flying overhead, basically make no noise, they just blend into the background, which allows you between those two items to really scale these vehicles up, bring the cost way down, and hopefully create a mass market transportation solution.

J.D. DURKIN: Talk to me about the partnership with NASA. Big headlines as of late. Really exciting. What does it mean for you and the company?

ADAM GOLDSTEIN: It’s actually a really special partnership because a lot of the core underlying technology of eVTOLs started at NASA. And so NASA was really involved in the very beginning of building what they call distributed electric propulsion, using multiple electric motors to fly an airplane. So once they put that concept out there, it really gave the birth of the industry, which we call eVTOLs or electric vertical takeoff landing aircraft. Today’s announcement is really focusing around safety and working with NASA to validate the safety of these aircraft. And we’re starting with the battery cells to show that these battery cells are very, very safe, can be used in mass market production. And who knows, maybe one day actually be used in space as well.

J.D. DURKIN: So that was going to ask you, do we have some sense of what Nasa is looking at this technology for in terms of where they see potential use place, you think?

ADAM GOLDSTEIN: Yeah so really helping create a new mass market transportation solution was the original, really thesis behind this. But there’s actually a lot of additional use cases you can get from some of the technologies. So we have created and working with very, very safe lithium ion batteries that can be used for transportation solutions. And so it doesn’t stop just in aerospace on the ground, you know, here on earth, it actually can be used in space as well. 

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