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Archer successfully completes multiple battery pack drop tests

Archer Aviation Press Release | March 28, 2024

Estimated reading time 3 minutes, 13 seconds.

Archer Aviation Inc., a developer of electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft, announced the successful completion of rigorous battery pack drop testing conducted at a National Institute for Aviation Research lab.

This marks a significant milestone in the development of the company’s proprietary electric propulsion system for its Midnight aircraft in what is seen as one of the most difficult tests to pass for an eVTOL aircraft, putting Archer in a strong position to successfully complete this same test in upcoming for-credit testing with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

Over the course of this week, Archer’s engineering and certification teams led Midnight’s proprietary battery packs through three 50-foot drop tests simulating extreme impact scenarios. Tested at varying states of charge, zero percent, 30 percent, and 100 percent, the battery packs withstood the impact without any signs of failure and, remarkably, continued to function properly.

This test is renowned within the electric aviation industry as one of the most challenging barriers to certification, designed to ensure battery packs can safely endure significant impact. A pivotal factor in the success of these tests is Archer’s choice to utilize cylindrical cells within Archer’s battery proprietary battery pack design.

“Successfully passing the battery pack drop tests marks a pivotal moment that paves the way for future ‘for credit’ certification testing with the FAA,” said Alex Clarabut, Archer’s battery lead. “This accomplishment highlights our dedication to not just meeting, but exceeding safety standards. It is a critical step towards our goal of ensuring that Midnight will be among the safest aircraft in the skies. It’s a testament to our team’s relentless pursuit of innovation and excellence, and we’re thrilled with the results that the battery packs not only passed the test, but still functioned properly afterward.”

Archer’s goal is to transform urban travel, replacing 60- to 90-minute commutes by car with estimated 10- to 20-minute electric air taxi flights that are safe, sustainable, low noise, and cost-competitive with ground transportation. Archer’s Midnight is a piloted, four-passenger aircraft designed to perform rapid back-to-back flights with minimal charge time between flights.

Click here for video of the drop tests.

This press release was prepared and distributed by Archer Aviation.

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