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Michael Cervenka joins Vertical Aerospace as COO

The U.K.-based eVTOL developer Vertical Aerospace has appointed Michael Cervenka as its chief operating officer.

Michael Cervenka with Vertical Aerospace eVTOL
Michael Cervenka brings two decades of aerospace engineering experience to his new role. Vertical Aerospace Photo

Cervenka joins the company from Rolls-Royce, where he served as head of Future Technologies and led the team that created the eVTOL concept unveiled at last year’s Farnborough International Airshow. Prior to that, he held a number of other leadership positions at Rolls-Royce, including as chief functional engineer, chief performance engineer, and chief development engineer for company’s Trent 900 and Trent 1000 engines.

At Vertical Aerospace, he will be responsible for operations and development, leading a team of more than 40 engineers and technical experts, and reporting to founder and CEO Stephen Fitzpatrick. In a press release, Fitzpatrick praised Cervenka’s “unique combination of heritage and excellence in engineering,” which he said “will be key in shaping our strategy to making certified eVTOL aircraft a reality.”

According to Cervenka, “The aerospace industry is on the cusp of the greatest transformation since the dawn of the jet age in the 1950s. For me, joining Vertical Aerospace presents a unique opportunity to help build a company at the forefront of that transformation.”

Founded in 2016, Vertical Aerospace flew its first full-scale eVTOL demonstrator last year. Now, the company is developing more advanced eVTOL models with extended range, payload, and passenger capacity. The company said it aims to offer intercity air taxi services by 2023.

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