Large Autonomous Cargo eVTOL Receives Flight Corridor Approval

The Cento aircraft, MightyFly’s large autonomous hybrid eVTOL cargo aircraft for expedited logistics, has already begun flight testing using an FAA approved flight corridor of up to 5,000 ft in altitude between the New Jerusalem and Byron Airports in California By Sarah Simpson / 13 May 2024
Large Autonomous Cargo eVTOL Receives Flight Corridor Approval
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MightyFly has become the first large autonomous cargo eVTOL company to receive an FAA flight corridor approval in the U.S.

MightyFly started flight testing the Cento aircraft at the beginning of the flight corridor in March, making rapid progress with its flight testing program.

This first FAA approval was confirmed via Freedom of Information Act inquiry in late March based on certification on January 25th, 2024, and includes the Certificate of Waiver or Authorization (COA) for a flight corridor of up to 5,000 ft in altitude between the New Jerusalem and Byron Airports in California and a Special Airworthiness Certification (SAC) enabling the company to test Beyond Visual Line of Site (BVLOS) capabilities while using a chase airplane.

Aircraft flight testing
The flight corridor unlocks the potential for MightyFly to advance its flight testing capabilities, perform autonomous A-to-B flights within the general aviation airspace, test aircraft range, test long-range Command and Control (C2) datalink communication, and to test future Detect and Avoid system for BVLOS flights.

Business development
MightyFly’s SAC market survey authorization allows the company to start demonstrating point-to-point autonomous delivery flights and carrying out proof of concept (POC) programs with customers and partners. This COA is a key enabler for MightyFly to position itself as a B2B expedited logistics industry disruptor.

This significant industry milestone was possibly due to the maturity of MightyFly’s aircraft, the expertise of the team both in autonomous aircraft development and aviation regulation, and the company’s relationship with the FAA. MightyFly is the first to receive this regulatory approval while being in its seed-fund stage, as compared to more highly funded autonomous cargo eVTOL companies with more than 10X the capital.

On March 4th, 2024, MightyFly started flying the 2024 Cento, its third-generation autonomous cargo aircraft, at the corridor’s origin airport. To date, the 2024 Cento has made strong gains in its flight test program, completing over 30 autonomous flights in a span of a few weeks.

The flight test campaign began after a series of ground tests were conducted both at MightyFly’s headquarters and at the test site. Those tests followed the public unveiling of the 2024 Cento aircraft in late January. This rapid progress is a testimony to the robustness of MightyFly’s autonomous flight technology, previously tested with its first and second-generation aircraft.

We are thrilled to publicly announce that we are the first large autonomous cargo eVTOL company to receive a flight corridor approval from the FAA and that we have already achieved some exciting and tangible flight test progress of the 2024 Cento. This is a solid vote of confidence from the FAA in our work and our ability to perform safe autonomous flights in the general aviation airspace. We now look forward to demonstrating point-to-point delivery flights with our partners in this space”, said MightyFly’s CEO, Manal Habib.

The flight test campaign will incorporate A-to-B flights and showcase autonomous deliveries of various use cases. MightyFly will start demonstrations of delivery flights of medical and pharmaceutical supplies, spare parts and manufacturing components, and fast-moving consumer goods inside its flight corridor and expand to additional use cases and markets.

The flight corridor will enable MightyFly to prepare for two major upcoming public flight debuts. Under a contract with the Michigan Office of Future Mobility and Electrification, MightyFly will publicly demonstrate point-to-point autonomous cargo delivery flights to partners and potential customers in Michigan.

The company is also planning to demonstrate flights to the U.S. Air Force, showcasing its autonomous loading, unloading, and balancing of packages capabilities. These public demonstrations will kick off the company’s entry into the expedited delivery market.

MightyFly’s large autonomous hybrid eVTOL cargo aircraft are purposefully designed and manufactured to excel in providing efficient delivery solutions when timelines and costs are critical. MightyFly will drastically improve expedited delivery services for those who rely on just-in-time deliveries, such as manufacturers, medical teams, first responders, retailers, and logistics companies.

Posted by Sarah Simpson Specialising in digital copy Sarah is an experienced copywriter and researcher. Working with Unmanned Systems Technology Sarah has developed a passion for sourcing unique digital content and a talent for writing about the latest technical innovations in the unmanned sector. Connect & Contact