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Rolls-Royce and Luxaviation collaborate on developing vertiports

Rolls-Royce is partnering with Luxaviation Group to develop vertiports and its surrounding infrastructure for future advanced air mobility flights.

Rolls-Royce Luxaviation
Rolls-Royce and Luxaviation have signed a memorandum of understanding to work together on vertiport infrastructure. Rolls-Royce Image

Through an agreement announced today, Rolls-Royce Electrical and Rolls-Royce Power Systems will provide charging and energy infrastructure for Luxaviation’s vertiports — a take-off and landing pad for future eVTOL aircraft.

Rolls-Royce will also provide maintenance support services for electric aircraft, and digital solutions for Luxaviation’s planned vertiport networks — Luxaviation said it already has a presence at more than 120 VIP terminals around the world.

Rob Watson, president of Rolls-Royce Electrical, said the partnership with the luxury jet and helicopter service provider is part of Rolls-Royce’s strategy to understand how it can deliver maintenance and services for eVTOL aircraft while building on its existing capabilities in analytics and maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO).

“This strategic partnership also leverages capabilities and technology across Rolls-Royce as we develop the electrical power and propulsion systems for eVTOL and commuter aircraft,” Watson said in a press release. “Rolls-Royce is set to build on our existing network to offer maintenance services for electrical systems.”

The company claims its microgrid solutions can support fast-charging electric aircraft, and provide sustainable power for vertiports.

“[Rolls-Royce] Power Systems can already supply climate-friendly microgrids that combine renewable energy sources, battery storage, and conventional power generation,” Andreas Schell, CEO of Rolls-Royce Power Systems. “Soon we will also offer them with fuel cell generators, hydrogen engines, and electrolyzers. This is another demonstration of how Rolls-Royce is helping make aviation more sustainable.”

The companies plan to leverage existing capabilities to provide electrical solutions that are “agile and in continuous evolution to scale up advanced air mobility operations alongside regulatory development pace and market demand,” said Christophe Lapierre, Luxaviation’s head of strategy and president of business aviation support services.

The companies said the first part of this partnership will be to create and implement a pilot project outlining electrical solutions for Luxaviation’s vertiports.

Both Rolls-Royce and Luxaviation have previous partnerships with eVTOL developers in the space. Among other AAM activities, last spring, Rolls-Royce partnered with U.K.-based Vertical Aerospace to design an electric propulsion system that would power the eVTOL developer’s five-seat aircraft.

This is also around the same time Luxaviation announced a partnership with German-eVTOL developer Lilium, which will see Luxaviation assume responsibility for parts of the regional air mobility operations being developed by Lilium.

Last year, both Rolls-Royce and Luxaviation announced their intention of reaching net zero carbon emissions with all of their new products by 2023, and with all existing products by 2050.

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