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Airbus & HAX Open Accelerator Program For Flying Taxis In Shenzen

Aeronautics behemoth Airbus is joining forces with early-stage startups investor HAX to create a new four-month accelerator program aimed at developing the technology to address the various challenges of urban air mobility.

The investment into flying vehicle technology is continuing to grow at a seemingly exponential rate. We’ve seen new VTOLs such as the PassengerDrone being launched recently, and companies like Lilium and Volocopter are receiving large capital injections. Now, aeronautics behemoth Airbus is joining forces with early-stage startups investor HAX to create a new four-month accelerator program aimed at developing the technology to address the various challenges of urban air mobility.

Based in Shenzhen, China, (with a satellite in San Francisco, US) the program is focused on early-stage startups that are working in areas such as aerial sense and avoid technology, air traffic management systems, infrastructure for flying vehicles, and more. Successful applicants to the program will receive a minimum investment of $100,000 along with expert guidance and hands-on help from the Airbus and HAX teams.

From Prototype to Marketplace

The idea is that the combined effort from all parties will help to bring the new ideas from a prototype stage to one of commercial marketability at a much quicker pace. It’s interesting to see Airbus and HAX investing in the technology surrounding this relatively new industry, rather than just focusing wholly on their own vehicles, like the Airbus Vahana Project.

This fund is further evidence that more and more people are looking at VTOLs as a key component of future transportation, and one that has the potential to solve a range of problems. Mathias Thomsen, Urban Air Mobility General Manager at Airbus, said in a statement that “Transportation in megacities needs fresh ideas to improve the way we live. We believe that adding the vertical dimension to urban mobility will improve the current congested megacity transport systems.”

Whether this change really will kick in is still up for debate. If you’re interested in applying for the program, check out the website for full details.

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