Archer Aviation’s Midnight Aircraft Completes Phase 1 of Flight Test Program in Three Months
Archer Aviation Inc. (NYSE: ACHR), a prominent player in the electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft sector, has reached a significant milestone with the successful completion of Phase 1 in the flight test program for its Midnight aircraft.
Drawing from insights gathered during the preceding four years of flight testing, Archer’s Midnight surpassed expectations in terms of efficiency, outpacing the development timeline of its full-scale prototype aircraft, Maker. The recent upgrade to Midnight’s battery system, featuring high voltage battery packs from Archer’s San Jose, California manufacturing line, aligns with the company’s strategic commitment to readiness for production.
As the program progresses, the Midnight aircraft is poised for the crucial full wing-borne transition flight in Phase 2. This phase marks a pivotal step towards achieving certification, positioning Archer to commence piloted “for credit” testing with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) later this year.
Archer’s Founder and CEO, Adam Goldstein, emphasized the effective advancement of Midnight through the flight test program:
Midnight is progressing efficiently through our flight test program,” said Archer’s founder and CEO Adam Goldstein. “Over the last four years of flight testing, our team has been able to gather a tremendous amount of data and learnings that enable us to advance Midnight rapidly towards certification. Our team’s focus on safety and relentless execution has gotten us to where we are today and is what will allow us to achieve what no other company in the world has done to date–bring electric air taxis to cities across the U.S. and the globe.
Phase 1 of the flight test program encompassed a spectrum of progressively intricate flight maneuvers and data collection missions. As Midnight enters Phase 2, the focus shifts to an incremental approach to speed testing, paving the way for full wing-borne transition. This critical milestone demonstrates the aircraft’s ability to seamlessly transition between vertical takeoff and landing and efficient cruising in wingborne flight. Subsequent to Phase 2, Phase 3 will involve simulated commercial route flights, showcasing the operational readiness of the aircraft.
Archer’s overarching objective is to revolutionize urban travel, offering electric air taxi flights as a viable alternative to lengthy car commutes. The Midnight aircraft, a four-passenger, piloted vehicle, is engineered for rapid back-to-back flights with minimal charge time between missions.
Headquartered in Santa Clara, CA, Archer is at the forefront of designing and developing electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft, contributing to the realization of urban air mobility networks. The company’s mission is rooted in unlocking the skies, providing individuals with the freedom to reimagine their modes of movement and time utilization. Archer’s progress with the Midnight aircraft underscores its commitment to the evolution of sustainable and efficient transportation solutions.
Miriam McNabb is the Editor-in-Chief of DRONELIFE and CEO of JobForDrones, a professional drone services marketplace, and a fascinated observer of the emerging drone industry and the regulatory environment for drones. Miriam has penned over 3,000 articles focused on the commercial drone space and is an international speaker and recognized figure in the industry. Miriam has a degree from the University of Chicago and over 20 years of experience in high tech sales and marketing for new technologies.
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