Urban air mobility company EHang announced that the company is progressing toward obtaining the Production Certificate (PC) and Airworthiness Certificate (AC) for the EH216-S, its self-developed passenger-carrying Unmanned Aerial Vehicle. Under the guidance of the CAAC Central and Southern Regional Administration, EHang is steadily moving towards obtaining the PC and producing EH216-S according to its Type Certificate (TC). The initial batch of the EH216-S passenger-carrying UAVs following the TC is scheduled to roll off the production line with customer deliveries in the fourth quarter of 2023.
On 13 October the CAAC formally granted the TC for the EH216-S passenger-carrying UAV system. The EH216-S TC is a passenger-carrying unmanned Electric Vertical Takeoff and Landing (eVTOL) aircraft.
The Type Certificate Data Sheet (TCDS), released alongside the TC, is an integral document that accompanies the TCs for all aviation product categories. Operating under the “progressive risk” principle, the company prioritises safe operations and accountability to the public to avoid unforeseen safety challenges in various situations once official commercial operations commence. EHang has agreed with the CAAC in regards to operational limitations for the initial phase. EHang will gradually lift these operational limitations with the ultimate goal to realise comprehensive unmanned commercial operations across urban areas.
To ensure safety, EHang will closely monitor new routes during the first phase of commercial operations. Moreover, it will position extra observers in areas that are beyond the operators’ visual line of sight to satisfy requirements for beyond visual line-of-sight (BVLOS) operations. EHang will accumulate more experience while ensuring safety in the first stage. Like conventional aircraft that take off and land on solid ground, the EH216-S passenger-carrying UAV will not operate over water. However, according to specific needs of operational spots and route-setting requirements, there won’t be restrictions on water bodies like lakes, rivers, seaside and others when conducting aerial tourism and sightseeing experiences, as well as other low-altitude flights in certain urban areas. Under CAAC’s guidance of “conducted trial operations while advancing certification”, the EH216-S passenger-carrying UAV has completed numerous test flights at high-altitude areas, proving its full capability in such scenarios. Following the first phase of safe operations, EHang will further expand various operational scenarios and progressively introduce BVLOS flights and those at higher altitudes areas.
Huazhi Hu, Founder, Chairman, and CEO of EHang commented, “Safety is the lifeline of the aviation industry. Ensuring a rigorous and systematic approach to the research and development, production, operation, and management of aerial vehicles remains a core value for the CAAC, EHang, and all our collaborators. We will continue to innovate and maintain our leading advantages. In accordance with the CAAC’s safety standards and airworthiness requirements, we are committed to ensuring the safety of every passenger and cementing a solid foundation for commercial operations. Looking ahead, we will further advance UAV passenger-carrying flight operations and full-scale commercial deployments to achieve milestones in the development of the global low-altitude economy.”