The strategic alliance between Fraport, a leading global airport operator, and Lilium, an innovative electric air-taxi company, marks a significant step towards revolutionizing regional air mobility. This partnership focuses on developing a commercial network for electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft, starting with a thorough analysis of the necessary planning and approval steps for implementing such operations at airports.
Fraport’s Global Stance and Vision
With a presence at over 30 international airports across four continents, Fraport stands as a beacon of intermodal connectivity. Their involvement in this endeavor underlines their commitment to maintaining and enhancing their status as a global frontrunner in integrating diverse transportation modes. Alexander Laukenmann, Senior Executive Vice President Aviation at Fraport AG, emphasizes their focus on examining the impact of eVTOLs on airport infrastructure. Fraport’s role in this collaboration is pivotal, considering its vast experience and reach in the global aviation sector.
Lilium’s Technological Edge
Lilium brings to the table its expertise in developing all-electric, low-noise, high-speed eVTOL jets. These jets are not just technologically advanced but also environmentally sustainable, offering zero operating emissions. CEO Klaus Roewe of Lilium highlights the goal of jointly advancing regulatory and practical steps for suitable framework conditions for electric aviation in Germany and Europe. Lilium’s existing partnerships with German airports like Stuttgart, Munich, Nuremberg, Cologne-Bonn, and Düsseldorf complement this collaboration.
Vertiport Concepts and Network Development
A critical aspect of this partnership is the development of future mobility concepts for vertiport networks, particularly around airports. Vertiports, specifically designed for eVTOLs, will require innovative designs and layouts to accommodate electric infrastructure. This collaboration aims to define what these vertiport concepts could look like, taking into account various factors like location suitability, structural implementation, and airspace integration procedures.
Regulatory and Infrastructure Exploration
Both Fraport and Lilium are set to engage in exploration studies focusing on the infrastructure necessary for eVTOL operations. They plan to work closely with industry groups and the German government to expedite the required regulatory work. Such collaborative efforts are essential in paving the way for the introduction of regional electric air mobility.
Advancing Sustainable Regional Aviation
The partnership is poised to redefine regional aviation, offering a sustainable and efficient alternative to conventional modes of transport. The Lilium Jet, characterized by its spaciousness, low noise, and high speed, is set to become a leader in sustainable regional air mobility for both passengers and cargo.
The collaboration between Fraport and Lilium is a testament to the evolving landscape of regional aviation, where sustainability, efficiency, and innovation are at the forefront. By combining Fraport’s global operational expertise with Lilium’s technological prowess in eVTOLs, this partnership is set to create a paradigm shift in how we perceive and engage in regional air travel.