aussie skyportz’s vertiport database reflects global uam ambitions

Just a week after Australian vertiport company Skyportz announced its plans to create the country’s first network of air taxi terminals in Melbourne, the company unveiled a database analyzing and cataloguing potential spots for urban air mobility (UAM) infrastructure worldwide.

Skyportz CEO Clem Newton-Brown revealed the vertiport database at a conference in Turkey on Wednesday, describing it as a service to help investors and operators of future UAM hubs select suitable venues in cities and countries around the globe.

Working with consultancy To70 Aviation, NEXA Capital, and UAM Geomatics, Skyportz will analyze locations under consideration by clients in terms of passenger demand, access to electric networks for recharging, interlinking potentials with other modes of transport, and a long list of details expected to affect the operation, efficiency, and cost of the facilities.

As it does so, Skyportz will enlarge its vertiport database from the current list of about 400 sites – virtually all in its Australian domestic market – to many more around the world under consideration for use as UAM terminals around the world.

Probably not incidentally, in playing that role of vetting expert and facilitator, Skyportz will also place itself in an ideal spot to supply and assemble its modular vertiport structures for companies using the database service as they choose properties as air taxi stations.

Indeed, launch of its UAM infrastructure database comes in the wake of Skyportz announcing plans to build a network of air taxi terminals in Melbourne’s fast-growing Caribbean Park business park – the first in Australia – and unveiling the Contreras Earl Architecture-designed modular vertiports it plans to construct there.

Its move this week to begin helping connect future infrastructure owners and operators with suitable international locations is an evident effort of Skyportz to expand its ambitions for the vertiport concept internationally. The prefabricated kit is composed of materials light enough to ship to destinations around the world, is rapidly assembled, and can be customized to operator demands.

The successive announcements aren’t surprising given Newton-Brown’s hard-charging direction of the company. He manages Skyportz on the belief that while leading UAM aircraft developers have received ample funding of over $10 billion in their drive to produce air taxis, the launch and success of those aerial services risk being undermined by the comparative paucity of investment – and timid action – to construct the vertiports they’ll need to operate.

Read: Airbus prepares its AAM eVTOL plane for operation in Japan

In launching Skyportz database, Newton-Brown is seeking to mobilize logical candidates for vertiport ownership and management, and get them working fast to have UAM infrastructure ready by the time the first air taxi is certified.

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