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Honeywell to develop autonomous flight systems with Volocopter

Aerospace company Honeywell has jumped into the urban air mobility market with a deal to help develop automatic landing technology for electric air taxis under development by German company Volocopter.

The companies will jointly develop and test sensor-based navigation systems, making use of Honeywell's experience with advanced navigation equipment and autonomous technology.

Volocopter has set a goal to fly one of its aircraft with a Honeywell inertial measurement-based attitude reference system this year, says the company's chief technology officer Henrik Boelens.

Honeywell says the project "launches" it into the "rapidly developing" segment of urban air mobility – a concept in which flying taxis, hailed via on-demand technology, transport passengers between rooftops in crowded, gridlocked cities.

Volocopter performed manned flights of its 18-rotor, two-seat VC200 air taxi prototype in 2016 and has performed public demonstrations since.

The company has said it aims to transport 100,000 passengers hourly over cities by 2028.

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