California-based Archer Aviation has completed its first hover test flight for its Maker eVTOL demonstrator on Thursday at an airfield in Northern California.
The hover test comes six months after unveiling the Maker eVTOL aircraft in June, and marks the company’s first full systems test and validation of the aircraft’s hardware and software components.
Over the past year, the eVTOL developer has checked off other milestones, including becoming a publicly traded eVTOL company in September — the same month Archer claimed to have received its G-1 certification basis from the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration.
“The past six months have been an incredible journey, from unveiling Maker to watching it take its first flight,” said Brett Adcock, Archer co-founder and co-CEO. “[This hover test flight] is a milestone for both Archer and the future of travel. I’m extremely proud of this exceptional team.”
Now with its first hover test flight finished, the company said it will move forward with an extensive flight test campaign into the new year. The testing will include hover envelope expansion to reach higher altitudes, followed by transition envelope expansion to ensure the Maker can move from hover to forward flight.
Archer said it plans to unveil its piloted, four-passenger aircraft in 2023, which will be used to launch an aerial ridesharing service in late 2024.