Archer partners with Etihad Training to recruit eVTOL pilots in UAE

Urban Air Mobility (UAM) company Archer Aviation has formed a partnership with Etihad Aviation Training to recruit and train pilots for its Midnight electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft.

The memorandum of understanding lays the groundwork for a partnership that will see both companies work with the UAE’s General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) on a pilot training curriculum to certify eVTOL pilots in the country.

Nikhil Goel, Archer’s chief commercial officer, said: “Training a fleet of pilots to operate our aircraft is a critically important part of our efforts to establish a thriving urban air mobility network in Abu Dhabi and the rest of the UAE, and Etihad Training is the premier organization to partner with on this front.”

As part of the agreement, Archer will deliver a Midnight aircraft simulator to Etihad Training’s centre next to the Etihad Aviation Group’s headquarters in Abu Dhabi, in preparation for the first pilots to begin training by 2025.

The partnership continues Archer’s investments in the region, which has become one of its key launch areas, after the manufacturer signed an agreement with Air Chateau last year for the purchase of 100 Midnight aircraft for operations in Abu Dhabi and Dubai.

It also marks the first foray into UAM operations for Etihad Training, CEO Paolo La Cava said: “We couldn’t be more excited to choose Archer as our first eVTOL partner to recruit and train the first class of electric air taxi pilots to fly Archer’s Midnight aircraft right here in Abu Dhabi as soon as 2025.”

As highlighted by Archer, Abu Dhabi has become one of the early adopters of UAM technology as the sector builds up to commercial operations in the coming years.

Abu Dhabi Airports (ADA) CEO Elene Sorlini recently told Airport Technology that the tech was “very important” to the UAE government’s agenda and ADA was already in talks with some of the operators that

Sorlini said that while ADA’s airports were not necessarily fitted with UAM technology yet,there would be very little required to prepare them to host eVTOL and electric air taxi flights.

She said that an airport would need charging units and line maintenance facilities but “we don’t have to dramatically change the infrastructure that we have. And I don’t think we are talking about many years here, we are talking about months.”

Source: airport-technology

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