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Aviation Safran & Bell Helicopter Air-Taxi eVTOL

Published on June 26th, 2018 | by Nicolas Zart

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Safran & Bell Helicopter Collaborating On Future eVTOL Air Taxi

June 26th, 2018 by  


Electric aviation has been a nonstop media affair this past year. It is riding on strong tailwinds from the growth and improvement of the electric car and electric bus industries. Overall, 2018 has been a dominant year in the field of electric mobility, after 2017 and prior years laid the foundation. With regard to air travel and aircraft designs, that means getting closer and closer to commercial viability.

Safran & Bell Helicopter Air Taxi

Safran & Bell Helicopter Air-Taxi eVTOLBefore you get excited, or not, about a new eVTOL concept, note that this one is still a concept — but one that is maturing in time. Although neither companies have any definitive shapes or designs to show, a conceptual cabin mockup was presented at CES in Las Vegas, Nevada. The mockup was designed by Bell. Still, we do not know if the eVTOL will use traditional helicopter-like rotors, lift wings, etc. or not. What we do know technically is that Bell uses the hybrid electric power system approach developed by Safran.

Safran & Bell Helicopter Air-Taxi eVTOL

According to Safran’s senior executive vice president of R&T and innovation, Stéphane Cueille (un grand Merci, Stéphane!), according to FlyingMag: “Thanks to the long and sustained technology-development strategy conducted within the Safran group, we can now offer Bell our hybrid electric power solutions for their next generation products that result in improved performance giving more value to our customers.”

Bell’s director of innovation, Scott Drennan, added that he not only sees the partnership as mutually beneficial, but it is also a part of history. “Our work with Safran is a historical milestone for future transport solutions,” he said.

Making Sense Of What We Know Of The Safran & Bell Helicopter eVTOL Air Taxi

Safran & Bell Helicopter Air-Taxi eVTOLWas that diplomatic enough? While we might not know a lot about the Safran and Bell Helicopter air taxi, all signs seems to lead in that direction — small, two- to six-seat electric aircraft with either very short take-off and landing specs or VTOLs.

Both companies Safran and Bell Helicopter are not unknown in their respective industries. Safran is a well known airspace player that brings to the table its aviation airspace defense experience to combine with Bell’s decades-long history of helicopter flight.

Safran & Bell Helicopter Air-Taxi eVTOL

What we look forward to is the mix of helicopter-like, drone-like, encased and not encased solutions we are continuing to see developing. The Safran & Bell Helicopter Air Taxi is yet another example of this diversified and creative field.


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About the Author

Nicolas was born and raised around classic cars of the 1920s, but it wasn't until he drove an AC Propulsion eBox and a Tesla Roadster that the light went on. Eager to spread the news of that full torque, he was invited to write for various CleanTech outlets in 2007. Since then, his passion led to cover renewable energy, test drives, podcasts, shoot pictures, and film for various international outlets both in print and online. Nicolas offers an in-depth look at the e-mobility world through interviews and the many contacts he has forged in those industries. He particularly enjoys communicating about the new e-mobility technology and what it means to us as a society. Today he focuses most of his writing effort on CleanTechnica, a global online outlet that covers the world of electric vehicles and renewable energy. His favorite tagline is: "There are more solutions than obstacles."



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