The authorities of prosperous Middle Eastern countries have longare keen on the idea of providing passenger air travel using electric powered aircraft, and Joby Aviation's agreement this week with the UAE government underscores the continuity of this course. The company will be able to begin commercial operation of its air taxis in Dubai from 2026.
As explained in the press release, test flightswill be carried out starting next year, but on a commercial basis they will begin only a year later. By then, Skyports will have designed and built four aircraft sites in Dubai for Joby Aviation to operate and maintain. Air routes will connect Dubai International Airport, the famous artificial island of Palm Jumeirah, the prestigious coastal area of Dubai Marina and the central part of the city.
The emergence of an air route between the airportDubai and the Palm Jumeirah area, for example, will reduce travel time from 45 to 10 minutes compared to a car transfer. Joby Aviation has secured the exclusive right to provide such transport services in Dubai for a period of six years. At the same time, the company will develop other areas of the UAE, but there it will initially have to compete on equal terms with other startups in this area. The latter, as it becomes clear from the terms of the agreement with Joby Aviation, will not be able to carry out air transportation on a commercial basis in the airspace of this emirate for six years after the launch of the service in Dubai.
Joby Aviation aircraft useelectric propulsion for air transport of up to four passengers and a pilot at speeds of up to 322 km/h. In its homeland in the United States, the startup expects to begin commercial operation of flying taxis from 2025 in San Francisco and New York. The device with the function of vertical take-off and landing can carry cargo and passengers with a total mass of 453 kg by air; the charge of the traction batteries should be enough for approximately 161 km of travel, taking into account the mandatory reserve.