Elegant airplanes for efficient delivery

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Electric airplanes for UPS
By Jerry Brownstein
The UPS delivery service is going green with all-electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft (EVTOL). The plane has a flying range of 400 km, with cargo capacity of over 600 kg and a cruising speed of up to 270 km per hour. It uses four fixed vertical lift propellers to go up and down, with one pusher propeller to go forward. The elegant design of this airplane was inspired by the Arctic tern, an amazing bird that flies long migration routes of up to 90,000 km each year.

The EVTOL will take off and land on the roofs of UPS centres. On each roof there will be a rapid recharging station that can fully charge the plane in under an hour, which is enough time for the aircraft to be unloaded and reloaded for the next flight. This plane is ideally suited for time-sensitive deliveries that would otherwise fly on traditional airplanes, which are environmentally unfriendly and require the use of airports. Using vertical takeoffs and landings turns existing UPS facilities into an air feeder network without the noise or pollution of traditional aircraft. UPS will order up to 150 of these planes as part of a sustainability drive that also includes the purchase of 20,000 electric delivery vans over the next three years. These vans produce no pollution, and they will be placed in service in the UK, Europe, and North America.


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