Midnight aircraft aims to provide the US military with vertical take-off personnel transport and logistics support
Archer Aviation has expanded its partnership with the US Department of Defence through its contract with air force. The new contracts will see delivery of up to six of Archer’s eVTOL Midnight electric aircraft to the Air Force, the sharing of additional flight test data and certification related test reports, pilot training, and the development of maintenance and repair operations.
Since 2021, Archer has been engaged in a series of projects through the Air Force’s AFWERX program with the goal of helping the AFWERX Agility Prime programme assess the transformational potential of the vertical flight market and eVTOL technologies for DoD purposes. Now, with Archer recently completing the manufacturing of its first Midnight aircraft, the DoD recognizes that with its vertical takeoff and landing capabilities, target payload of approximately 1,000lbs, proprietary electric powertrain system, and low noise profile, Archer’s aircraft represents a potential benefit to military aviation and operations.
These aircraft hold the promise of enhancing rapid response, agility and operational effectiveness across a wide range of mission profiles, from personnel transport and logistics support to rescue operations etc. The Midnight aircraft are expected to provide a much safer and quieter alternative to helicopters while being more cost-effective to transport, operate and maintain in the field.
According to Adam Goldstein, Archer’s Founder and CEO, it’s clear that the development and commercialisation of eVTOL technology continues to remain a national priority.
“We are looking forward to working closely with the air force to integrate Midnight into its operational fleet with a focus on transport, logistics and rescue operations,” he says.
Colonel Tom Meagher, the lead for AFWERX Agility Prime programmes believes that the aircraft is important for the development and deployment of emerging aerospace technology.
“eVTOL aircraft represent the cusp of the third revolution in aerospace, and these aircraft and their descendants will drive advances in capabilities and efficiency. Our contracts with Archer Aviation provide us with the opportunity to play a role in ensuring that we unlock the many benefits these aircraft have to offer the military,” he says.