Fort Worth-based Bell announced that it will collaborate with the French company Safran to develop hybrid electric propulsion solutions for Bell’s vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) concept aircraft.
“Bell is at the forefront of on-demand mobility — ushering a new era of flight where the benefits of aviation are accessible to more people in more places,” Bell’s Director of Innovation Scott Drennan said in a release.
He said the collaboration is proof of Bell’s commitment to offering transportation for people and logistics in new, more efficient, and innovative ways.
“Our work with Safran is a historical milestone for future transport solutions.”
“Our work with Safran is a historical milestone for future transport solutions,” he said.
Bell, a Textron company, said that Safran has been exploring the potential for hybrid solutions for future propulsion systems for several years, and the French company shares Bell’s vision for electric and hybrid electric aircraft.
Bell is working toward a successful deployment of Bell Air Taxis and new on-demand mobility systems.
Bell will lead the design, development, and production of the VTOL systems, and Safran will bring its technical expertise to the collaboration, which seeks to develop a disruptive propulsion system.
AIR TAXI TESTING WILL OCCUR IN DFW
Dallas-Fort Worth and Bell are at the center of VTOL development.
In May, Uber Elevate unveiled what it wants its flying taxis to look like — aircraft that could be shuttling passengers around the skies over Dallas, perhaps as early as 2020.
Uber is working with Hillwood Properties in DFW to build vertical skyports and Bell is helping to develop the vehicles.
Dallas design firms Corgan, Humphreys & Partners, and BOKA Powell are finalists for the design of the skyports.