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Guest: Dr. Anita Sengupta; Topics: VTOL urban aerial mobility technology market 7 craft development, technical VTOL issues, VTOL business case and much more.
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We welcomed back to the show Dr. Anita Sengupta for a one segment 76 minute discussion regarding her new company, Airspace Experience Technologies (ASX), a developer of urban aerial mobility, tilt wing taxi/Uber/:Lyft like commercial all electric short range planes. The plans call for both a cargo model followed by a four passenger model, each with a pilot on board but being developed for autonomous operation. For more information, visit the company website, https://www.iflyasx.com. In addition, I posted photos, a PDF document and social media links plus Vimeo short films on our blog so that you will have an even better understanding of the market, the commercial potential and the all-electric aircraft being made by Dr. Sengupta's company.
Dr. Sengupta stated us off with an introduction to the market, VTOL development, the plane being designed and made by her company, commercial issues, challenges, business models, performance specs for the all-electric four motor plane and much more. A good part of at least the first half of our discussion was spent talking about these aspects of the company, the plane, flight profile, markets in the US and overseas, financing and capitalization, plus we talked about the regulatory side of things. As you will hear, the company works closely with the FAA and Anita talked about the need to operate in controlled airspace. Technical issues such as range, recharging time for the batteries, battery development and R&D, plus pilot requirements were part of the discussion.
Our guest was asked about the challenges in development along with the challenges for operations with the FAA certified plane. In addition, Anita had much to say about the four electric engines along with the tilt wing.
Anita described a typical flight profile using as an example Santa Monica, CA to Long Beach, CA. Don't miss how she described the flight. For the latter part of the program, our guest was asked about noise and sound levels, baggage capacity for a passenger, possible backup power if needed, the business model being pursued by the company, a model which by the way was based on fractional ownership. Anita was asked about the cost per plane and the price point needed for making the product viable with their market, cost analysis and business plan. Competition in the market place was discussed as were various foreign markets of interest, plus complying with international flight regulations.
Before we ended the discussion, our guest was asked about promotional plans including showing off at airshows in Europe and here as well as elsewhere. Don't miss what our guest said about promotional plans, air show booths and more. A few late minute questions arrived regarding regulations and rules. Note that Anita said it was easier to develop with rules and regulations than with nothing as this came up when she was asked to compare her work on the supersonic parachute for Curiosity to her current VTOL work. Listen to her explanation and her experience in this area. Let us know what you think by posting on our blog.
Please post your comments/questions on TSS blog for this show. You can reach Dr. Sengupta through me, USC and her company along with the social media links provided on our blog.