Focus on Vertical Aerospace
Founded by greentech entrepreneur Stephen Fitzpatrick in 2016, Vertical Aerospace is disrupting the way aircraft are developed. Combining the rigor and discipline of aerospace with the pace and agility of F1 enables Vertical to develop cutting-edge electric aircraft. The company is already a global pioneer in sustainable aviation technologies, as one of only a handful of companies to have flown multiple full-scale eVTOL prototypes with UK Civil Aviation Authority approval.
UK aviation startup Vertical Aerospace plans to be first to market with its innovative electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft. As the company builds its business from scratch, it needs a robust platform to support its entire product development and certification process and bring together all disciplines in one place to innovate at speed.
Vertical Aerospace opted for a cloud-based version of the 3DEXPERIENCE platform to suit its immediate and growing business needs.
With all its operations running on the cloud, Vertical Aerospace has the agility it needs to accelerate product development. The 3DEXPERIENCE platform supports the company’s efforts to develop its product and processes in parallel and build a virtual twin of its aircraft that incorporates all disciplines and operations. This will help the company to navigate the complex certification process and maintain full traceability throughout the lifecycle of the aircraft.
Vertical Aerospace is building its revolutionary aircraft and defining its processes on the 3DEXPERIENCE platform on the Cloud with the Reinvent the Sky industry solution experience. This gives the company access to enterprise-level design, engineering and simulation software in a single, secure, standards-based environment.
Taxis take flight
The race to bring an electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft to market is on. One of the frontrunners, UK aviation startup Vertical Aerospace, is set to launch the world’s first certified winged eVTOL with the VA-1X. Quiet, efficient and carbon-emission free, eVTOL machines are praised as the next urban mobility solution. Innovators like Vertical Aerospace plan to move more freely and access local heliports and airports where noise regulations currently restrict the number of flights per day. Vertical Aerospace is targeting an aircraft that is significantly quieter than a helicopter – and will cost far less to run too – allowing it to tap into a market for travel between areas underserved by high-speed rail networks and regional airlines.
“What we’re witnessing is population growth in major cities where the ground base infrastructure such as road and public transportation is getting saturated and congested,” said Eric Samson, head of engineering at Vertical Aerospace. “Then there are helicopters, used for transportation around large cities, but they are increasingly facing landing restrictions due to noise levels, offer no safety redundancy, and are cost-prohibitive to the general public. We’re developing an electrically distributed propulsion system, which offers redundancy, is cheaper to run and maintain, will be about 30 times quieter than a helicopter, and doesn’t sacrifice the planet.”
Meeting core business needs
Vertical Aerospace is working with Dassault Systèmes’ business partner Desktop Engineering (DTE) to maximize how it takes advantage of the 3DEXPERIENCE platform. The company finds the support and guidance invaluable as it builds its processes and maps them to the platform’s functionality.
“The amount of functionality the platform delivers is hugely exciting,” said James McMillan, senior design engineer at Vertical Aerospace. “We’ve started by focusing on our core business needs and making sure we get these processes up and working, such as building a product structure and implementing a part numbering system which is future proof and will support configuration control. When we have fleets of operational aircraft, we need complete traceability of all the parts.”
James McMillan, senior design engineer at Vertical Aerospace, commented: “We’ve been working collaboratively with DTE and Dassault Systèmes to build our product structure and future proof it,” McMillan said. “But equally we have a really tight program so there’s lots we have to do right away such as getting the part numbering system in place. The guidance from both DTE and Dassault Systèmes has been amazing.”
“The cloud ensures business resilience and allows us to continue working from any location at any time,” Samson said. “Having all our data reside on the cloud ensures a single source of truth while saving us any upfront capital investment. All of our apps are always up-to-date and we can add and remove functionality according to our changing requirements.”
Eric Samson, head of engineering, Vertical Aerospace, said: “The 3DEXPERIENCE platform will help us to develop and share the critical steps of requirements, ensure we’re developing the aircraft according to those requirements, do validation and also manage the certification of the aircraft with the authorities. It’s a one-stop shop and single source of truth for Vertical Aerospace and our business partners that allows us to work concurrently wherever we are in the world.”