Japan Airlines and Japanese conglomerate Sumitomo Corporation have signed a cooperation agreement with Bell to study business opportunities for urban air mobility in Japan and around Asia.
The agreement will encompass market research for mobility services that eVTOL (electric vertical takeoff and landing) technology, as well as examining the feasibility of operation platforms such as air taxis.
The companies will also work towards tackling obstacles hindering eVTOL operations, such as safety, noise and public acceptance.
Last month, JAL signed a cooperation agreement with the Japanese city of Yabu to launch unmanned aerial vehicle test flights to transport medical supplies. It is working towards a goal of being able to deliver medical supplies to rural towns across Japan.
JAL’s partnership with Bell comes a day after German eVTOL firm Volocopter announced a partnership with Southeast Asian ride hailing firm Grab, to explore opportunities for urban air mobility in the region.