Joby Aviation has acquired Avionyx, an aerospace software engineering firm, to help support the type certification program for its five-seat eVTOL aircraft.
Based in San Jose, Costa Rica, Avionyx has spent more than three decades providing the aerospace industry with software development and verification solutions. The eVTOL developer said this acquisition will allow it to scale its resources by tapping into Avionyx’s team.
“Acquiring Avionyx puts us in excellent position to meet the regulatory requirements necessary for us to bring the Joby aircraft to market,” said Tom Ferrell, development assurance lead at Joby. “Having worked alongside Avionyx for the last year, I’m continuously impressed by the wealth of experience they bring to our software verification activities.”
Joby first awarded Avionyx a contract in 2021 to work on software testing and verification activities related to the company’s eVTOL aircraft.
Joby said software verification is a critical part of commercial aerospace certification programs, requiring engineers to review, analyze, and test the aircraft’s software to ensure it meets U.S. Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations. Avionyx has experience performing software verification services to meet both FAA and European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) standards.
The company will use Joby’s Vehicle Software Integration Lab in Marina, California, to leverage flight simulation and hardware emulation capabilities to carry out pre-programmed tests that are needed to verify the performance of various aircraft software systems. Joby said a similar facility will be established in San Jose, Costa Rica, to help move its software verification efforts forward.
The acquisition comes after the eVTOL developer completed its first compliance review with FAA representatives at the end of 2021, which assessed the company’s approach to the development and verification of the aircraft’s aerospace-grade software and airborne electronic hardware.
Joby is developing a piloted five-seat eVTOL aircraft with targeted speeds of up to 200 miles per hour (322 kilometers per hour), and a maximum range of 150 mi (241 km) on a single charge. The company expects to receive type certification from the FAA next year, and launch aerial ridesharing services in 2024.