Vertical Aerospace achieves successful electric flight with full-scale aircraft
Vertical Aerospace has successfully flown its full-scale electric aircraft and taken to the skies, marking a major moment for the move to zero emissions aviation.
The flight took place at the historic Cotswold Airport in Kemble, United Kingdom.
The VX4 eVTOL aircraft has lifted, hovered, flown and landed, all by the thrust of the aircraft’s propulsion system and powered only by Vertical’s proprietary battery packs.
This included the aircraft reaching its target thrustborne speed of 40knots (just over 40 miles per hour or 70 kilometres per hour).
Vertical next intends to put a pilot in the aircraft as it progresses its flight test programme to include crewed flight missions.
Vertical’s chief test pilot, Justin Paines, said: “The aircraft was remarkably easy to fly. It was rock-solid in stability and provided precise control even in demanding flight conditions such as hovering close to the ground.
“The aircraft leapt into a stable hover at lower RPM [revolutions per minute] than expected, taking advantage of the ground effect cushion. Battery temperatures and state-of-charge remained well within predictions for the duration of flights.”
Vertical is also building its second prototype aircraft, which will feature even more advanced technology from its top-tier global suppliers, and is targeting a certified aircraft by the end of 2026.