April 3, 2020
A manufacturer in the urban air mobility (UAM) arena has joined in the aviation community’s response to the COVID-19 crisis, even as the company continues its work to bring its pioneering transport vehicle to market.
A team member with Burlington, VT-based Beta Technologies – producer of a winged, electric-powered vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) aircraft – announced that one of its team members is spearheading a partnership with the University of Vermont Medical Center and other state businesses and institutions to create an innovative, reusable N95 personal protective equipment mask for frontline COVID-19 medical personnel and others.
The project is being led by engineer and entrepreneur Steve Ames; Beta reports the company is also developing “an automated emergency-use smart ventilator” to assist critical-care patients infected with the respiratory virus.
The humanitarian initiatives were detailed in a recent profile in WIRED magazine, which also outlines Beta’s continuing efforts to develop a single-platform vertiport and charging station, not just for its own planned winged electric-powered vertical takeoff and landing eVTOL aircraft, but also for other UAM and unmanned aircraft systems (UAS).
“Beta’s focus on lending a helping hand in this time of crisis, even as the company works to build a pioneering air-transport vehicle, underscores the industry’s readiness to put its powerful intellectual capabilities toward worthwhile humanitarian endeavors,” said Mike Nichols, CAM, CAE, NBAA senior vice president, strategy and innovation.