Californian eVTOL aircraft company Archer Aviation will deliver six Midnight aircraft to the US Air Force under new contracts worth US$142 million.
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Archer will provide delivery of up to six electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft for use in personnel transport, logistics support, and rescue operations for the USAF.
The company will also share additional flight test data, certification-related test reports, pilot training, and the development of maintenance and repair operations.
Archer founder and chief executive officer Adam Goldstein said Midnight aircraft represent cost-effective vertical take-off and landing capabilities with target payload of approximately 1,000 pounds, proprietary electric powertrain system, and low noise profile.
“This historic agreement reflects the steadfast commitment by our Armed Forces to embrace the cutting-edge technology our eVTOL aircraft offer,” he said.
“It’s clear that the development and commercialisation of eVTOL technology continues to remain a national priority.
“We look forward to working closely with the US Department of Defense and the US Air Force to integrate Midnight into their operational fleet with a focus on transport, logistics, and rescue operations.”
The company has partnered with the Department of Defense since 2021 on a series of projects to promote the vertical flight market and eVTOL technologies for Department of Defense purposes.
Archer recently announced the formation of a Government Services Advisory Board in May this year to more fully engage with US government and public safety agencies.
The board includes four-star (Ret’d) General Steve Townsend, three-star (Ret’d) Lieutenant General David A Krumm, three-star (Ret’d) Vice Admiral Ron Boxall, two-star (Ret’d) General Clayton M. Hutmacher, two-star (Ret’d) General Bill Gayler, and (Ret’d) Chief Warrant Officer 4 Michael J Durant.
“As a retired senior military leader who was responsible for US forces, operations, and activities throughout the continent of Africa, I’m thrilled with this agreement and its potential impact on the capabilities of our Armed Forces,” said four-star (Ret’d) General and Archer Government Services Advisory Board member Steve Townsend.
“The United States has always been at the forefront of technological innovation and this partnership demonstrates our nation’s commitment to maintain that position.
“I commend the visionary leadership at DOD which led to this contract and Archer’s dedication to pushing the boundaries of aviation technology.”