Urban Air Mobility/Advanced Air Mobility Using eVTOL Aircraft

A special issue of Applied Sciences (ISSN 2076-3417). This special issue belongs to the section "Aerospace Science and Engineering".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 May 2022) | Viewed by 27087

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Department of Aerospace Engineering, and Convergence Engineering for Intelligent Drone, Sejong University, Seoul 05006, Korea
Interests: eVTOL design; urban air mobility; solar aircraft design

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Recent developments in electric propulsion and battery technology enable new areas of operation for air vehicles. Quieter operations and shorter mission ranges facilitate air vehicles’ urban application. Increasing urbanization and population growth induce a rising transportation demand, and thus, especially during peak-hours, a high willingness-to-pay for further time-efficient mobility alternatives is to be assumed. The recent concept of urban air mobility (UAM), i.e., the utilization of next-generation vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) vehicles or personal air vehicles (PAVs) in urban environments could add additional transport supply into urban settings.

Passenger electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft are perceived as the key enabler for urban air mobility (UAM) to cut down on daily commute time for people and reduce carbon footprint by utilizing 3D airspace efficiently with zero operational emission.

Advanced air mobility’s (AAM) mission is to help emerging aviation markets to safely develop an air transportation system that moves people and cargo between places previously not served or underserved by aviation using revolutionary new aircraft that are only just now becoming possible.

Research topics in this Special Issue include:

  • eVTOL aircraft design;
  • Urban data, demand modeling of UAM/AAM;
  • Operating concept and vehicle selection;
  • Vertiport modeling and integration;
  • Route network and flight scheduling of UAM/AAM;
  • Noise Analysis of UAM/AAM;
  • Airspace concept and conflict detection of UAM/AAM;
  • Cost modeling and energy demand of UAM/AAM.

Prof. Ho Yon Hwang
Guest Editor

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Keywords

  • UAM
  • AAM
  • eVTOL
  • aircraft design
  • Vertiport

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

17 pages, 2951 KiB  
Article
A Vertiport Design Heuristic to Ensure Efficient Ground Operations for Urban Air Mobility
by Lukas Preis and Mirko Hornung
Appl. Sci. 2022, 12(14), 7260; https://doi.org/10.3390/app12147260 - 19 Jul 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 1691
Abstract
Urban Air Mobility is a novel concept of transportation with unknown market potential. Even in conservative estimates, thousands of operations could be expected on a single vertiport. This exceeds known heliport operations, which is the most comparable existing mode of transport—by far. Vertiport [...] Read more.
Urban Air Mobility is a novel concept of transportation with unknown market potential. Even in conservative estimates, thousands of operations could be expected on a single vertiport. This exceeds known heliport operations, which is the most comparable existing mode of transport—by far. Vertiport operations, in particular the dynamics on the airfield, are not well understood; in the following article, we want to address this research gap. By using means of agent-based simulation, the following design drivers were identified: peaks in demand, imbalance between arrivals and departures, pad operations and gate operations. We calculate a practical hourly capacity of 264 movements for our baseline scenario consisting of 4 pads, 12 gates and 20 stand. We are further able to shown that avoiding this peak and staying below a maximum imbalance between arrivals and departures of less than 33 ensures an average passenger delay of less than 3 min. Lastly, we present a parameter study varying the number of pads and gates, the length of approach/departure and boarding/de-boarding and the level of demand. The results of this study are aggregated into a graphical design heuristic displaying the interchangeability of the mentioned aspects. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Air Mobility/Advanced Air Mobility Using eVTOL Aircraft)
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31 pages, 17692 KiB  
Article
Design Criteria and Accommodating Capacity Analysis of Vertiports for Urban Air Mobility and Its Application at Gimpo Airport in Korea
by Byeongseon Ahn and Ho-Yon Hwang
Appl. Sci. 2022, 12(12), 6077; https://doi.org/10.3390/app12126077 - 15 Jun 2022
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 4114
Abstract
This study establishes design criteria for touchdown and liftoff (TLOF) pads, final approach and takeoff (FATO), safety areas, gates, and taxiways, which are components necessary for the operation of vertiports for urban air mobility (UAM), and analyzed vertiport capacity compliant with the arrangement [...] Read more.
This study establishes design criteria for touchdown and liftoff (TLOF) pads, final approach and takeoff (FATO), safety areas, gates, and taxiways, which are components necessary for the operation of vertiports for urban air mobility (UAM), and analyzed vertiport capacity compliant with the arrangement of the components in a limited space. We used new vertiport design regulations from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) for the vertiport design criteria. Vertiport components were sized based on Hyundai Motor’s S-A1 aircraft, and the layouts were classified as linear, satellite, and pier according to the arrangement of the TLOF pad and gate. The characteristics of each layout were analyzed for the same area. Based on these layouts, the parking space of Gimpo Airport that will be used for operating airport shuttles in the Seoul metropolitan area was measured and each layout was arranged to validate the characteristics of the layouts. Using the MATLAB program, we selected the most efficient layout among linear, satellite, and pier layouts, and estimated the TLOF pad and gate utilization rate. In addition, we evaluated the capacity of the two-story vertiport proposed by the Korea Airports Corporation for efficient use of space. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Air Mobility/Advanced Air Mobility Using eVTOL Aircraft)
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15 pages, 4218 KiB  
Article
Advanced Air Mobility: Opportunities and Challenges Deploying eVTOLs for Air Ambulance Service
by Rohit Goyal and Adam Cohen
Appl. Sci. 2022, 12(3), 1183; https://doi.org/10.3390/app12031183 - 24 Jan 2022
Cited by 18 | Viewed by 5270
Abstract
Advanced air mobility (AAM) is a broad concept enabling consumers access to on-demand air mobility, cargo and package delivery, healthcare applications, and emergency services through an integrated and connected multimodal transportation network. While a number of technical and social concerns have been raised [...] Read more.
Advanced air mobility (AAM) is a broad concept enabling consumers access to on-demand air mobility, cargo and package delivery, healthcare applications, and emergency services through an integrated and connected multimodal transportation network. While a number of technical and social concerns have been raised about AAM, early use cases for emergency response and aeromedical transport may be key to demonstrating the concept and building public acceptance. Using a five-step multi-method approach consisting of preliminary scoping, modeling performance metrics, developing baseline assumptions, analyzing scenarios, and applying a Monte Carlo sensitivity analysis, this study examines the potential operational and market viability of the air ambulance market using a variety of aircraft and propulsion types. The analysis concludes that electric vertical take-off and land (eVTOL) aircraft could confront a number of operational and economic challenges for aeromedical applications compared to hybrid vertical take-off and land (VTOL) aircraft and rotorcraft. The study finds that technological improvements such as reduced charge times, increased operational range, and battery swapping could make the eVTOL aircraft more reliable and cost-effective for aeromedical transport. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Air Mobility/Advanced Air Mobility Using eVTOL Aircraft)
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23 pages, 23404 KiB  
Article
Preliminary Propulsion and Power System Design of a Tandem-Wing Long-Range eVTOL Aircraft
by Javier Alba-Maestre, Koen Prud’homme van Reine, Tomas Sinnige and Saullo G. P. Castro
Appl. Sci. 2021, 11(23), 11083; https://doi.org/10.3390/app112311083 - 23 Nov 2021
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 4544
Abstract
Novel eVTOL aircraft configurations are picking up momentum in the emerging market of urban air mobility (UAM). These configurations feature electrical power systems and distributed propulsion architectures, both uncommon in current aircraft. As such, the design of eVTOL aircraft lies outside the bounds [...] Read more.
Novel eVTOL aircraft configurations are picking up momentum in the emerging market of urban air mobility (UAM). These configurations feature electrical power systems and distributed propulsion architectures, both uncommon in current aircraft. As such, the design of eVTOL aircraft lies outside the bounds of current established frameworks and poses many challenges in the field of preliminary aircraft design. This paper presents a preliminary design methodology for open rotor eVTOL configurations with batteries as the power source. First, the propeller external dimensions are calculated, and then an optimised blade geometry for cruise condition is computed. Thereupon, the batteries and electric motors are sized. The design framework is then applied to an eVTOL aircraft with a design range of 400 km and a capacity of five occupants (four passengers and one pilot), focusing on the central-European market and aimed to be released in 2030. The final configuration is a battery-powered tandem-wing aircraft with 12 variable-pitch, variable-speed open rotors placed on the leading edges of the wings. These rotors rotate outboard-down and feature six blades. The power source comprises 24 solid-state lithium batteries with a nominal voltage of 500 V and an assumed energy density of 500 Wh/kg. The proposed design methodology offers the possibility of computing the necessary propeller geometry for numerical simulations in the early stages of the design, and of easily obtaining accurate estimates for the mass of the power system which can improve the overall mass estimates for the analysed configuration. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Air Mobility/Advanced Air Mobility Using eVTOL Aircraft)
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18 pages, 8917 KiB  
Article
Holding Area Conceptual Design and Validation for Various Urban Air Mobility (UAM) Operations: A Case Study in Seoul–GyungIn Area
by Youngjae Lee, Junseok Lee and Jae-Woo Lee
Appl. Sci. 2021, 11(22), 10707; https://doi.org/10.3390/app112210707 - 12 Nov 2021
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 4216
Abstract
As populations become concentrated in cities, traffic congestion increases, and urban air mobility (UAM) is being considered to face this problem. Accordingly, many institutions and companies around the world are developing UAM vehicles, building infrastructure, and researching flight operating systems. In this study, [...] Read more.
As populations become concentrated in cities, traffic congestion increases, and urban air mobility (UAM) is being considered to face this problem. Accordingly, many institutions and companies around the world are developing UAM vehicles, building infrastructure, and researching flight operating systems. In this study, three holding area concepts have been designed that can control air traffic flows and avoid bad weather conditions when UAM vehicles are operating. These holding areas have been considered to allow UAM vehicles to fly by avoiding collisions with other UAM vehicles or structures such as buildings. After validating the turning radius analysis with existing aircraft, a case study on the holding area concept design for the Seoul–GyungIn area was performed to determine whether UAM vehicles can turn within a narrow radius. It was not possible for winged-type UAM vehicles to turn across the Han River at cruise speed. The holding area concepts and the turning procedure of this study can be used as guidelines when designing UAM corridors or UAM flight routes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Air Mobility/Advanced Air Mobility Using eVTOL Aircraft)
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19 pages, 9541 KiB  
Article
Selection of Vertiports Using K-Means Algorithm and Noise Analyses for Urban Air Mobility (UAM) in the Seoul Metropolitan Area
by Junyoung Jeong, Minjun So and Ho-Yon Hwang
Appl. Sci. 2021, 11(12), 5729; https://doi.org/10.3390/app11125729 - 21 Jun 2021
Cited by 17 | Viewed by 4700
Abstract
In this study, a combination of well-established algorithms and real-world data was implemented for the forward-looking problem of future vertiport network design in a large metropolitan city. The locations of vertiports were selected to operate urban air mobility (UAM) in the Seoul metropolitan [...] Read more.
In this study, a combination of well-established algorithms and real-world data was implemented for the forward-looking problem of future vertiport network design in a large metropolitan city. The locations of vertiports were selected to operate urban air mobility (UAM) in the Seoul metropolitan area based on the population of commuters, and a noise priority route was created to minimize the number of people affected by noise using Aviation Environmental Design Tool (AEDT) software. Demand data were analyzed using survey data from the commuting population and were marked on a map using MATLAB. To cluster the data, the K-means algorithm function built in MATLAB was used to select the center of the cluster as the location of the vertiports, and the accuracy and reliability of the clustering were evaluated using silhouette techniques. The locations of the selected vertiports were also identified using satellite image maps to ensure that the location of the selected vertiports were suitable for the actual vertiport location, and if the location was not appropriate, final vertiports were selected through the repositioning process. A helicopter model was then used to analyze the amount of noise reduction achieved by the noise priority route, which is the route between the selected K-UAM vertiports compared to the shortest distance route. As a result, it was shown that the noise priority route that minimized the amount of noise exposure was more efficient than the business priority routes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Urban Air Mobility/Advanced Air Mobility Using eVTOL Aircraft)
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