SANTA ANA – Overair, an electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) startup, announced June 14, $145 million in funding from Hanwha Systems and Hanwha Aerospace. Headquartered in Santa Ana with a flight test facility complex in Victorville, the company stated they remain “on track to fly its all-electric experimental prototype in the second half of 2023” with the new investment.
“This is a tremendous milestone for our growing team, and we’re extremely well positioned to deliver sustainable aerial ridesharing to the world through the development of Butterfly,” said Overair Co-Founder and CEO Ben Tigner. “We’ve proven Butterfly’s propulsion system, so we’ll now begin validating Butterfly’s ability to operate safely in real-world weather conditions, carry significant payloads, and fly incredibly quietly.”
Butterfly is an all-electric aircraft with six seats designed to take off and land vertically. The aircraft’s advanced propulsion system is derived from decades of military VTOL programs led by Abe Karem.
The aircraft’s Optimum Speed Propulsion (OSP) uses four large propellers, which spin slowly when hovering and even slower when cruising. According to Overair, “the slow-turning props produce extraordinarily little sound, which will allow Butterfly to operate in high-density areas with noise sensitive communities”.
Hanwha Aerospace, the only aircraft engine manufacturer in South Korea, says they are selecting ‘Game Changer’ businesses that can really excel in the future, and an eVTOL vehicle is a ‘Game Changer’.
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“With regard to our investment decision in Overair, we assessed that the company had the numerous patients [sic] and core technologies required to develop [a] highly efficient, low noise vehicle,” said Hanwha Systems CEO Sungchul Eoh. “Therefore, we expected that Overair would be capable of developing [a] superb vehicle that can satisfy the requirements for safety, efficiency, speed, low noise, and environment-friendly feature.”
Overair has previously stated that it expects to achieve FAA certification in 2025 and launch commercial services in 2026.
For more information about Overair visit https://www.overair.com/