The European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) has launched the public consultation of Notice of Proposed Amendment (NPA) 2024-01 to proactively support aviation stakeholders in the efficient and proportionate implementation of the regulatory framework for innovative air mobility (IAM) with manned vertical take-off and landing (VTOL)-capable aircraft (VCA), more commonly known as air taxis. The NPA proposes new and amended acceptable means of compliance and guidance material (AMC and GM) related to Opinion No 03/2023 which introduced such innovative operational and mobility concepts. The NPA aims to foster the evolution of the manned VCA market, support innovation and development in the IAM field, and reinforce its acceptance by European citizens.
The NPA explains:
- to competent authorities how they can comply with and apply the VCA requirements;
- to manufacturers how they can enable the deployment of safe VCA operations; and
- to operators how they can safely operate manned VCA in the single European sky (SES) and air traffic management (ATM) environments.
The proposed AMC and GM show, for example, how to enable VCA operations in urban environments or VCA Emergency Medical Services (VEMS) operations, where a doctor can use a VCA to reach the accident scene on time. The NPA also provides guidance on the nature of the skills and competencies required for a VCA pilot.