Urban Air Mobility Glossary
Our UAM Glossary is a collaborative effort from many industry experts.
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electric Short Take-off and Landing (eSTOL) vehicle
Electric short Take-off and landing aircraft (eSTOL) refers to the category of STOL aircraft that utilise battery technology, attaining propulsive power from electricity. eSTOL aircraft are able to take off and land on shorter than average runways.
Just like STOLs, they only need a short ground roll in order to achieve maximum take off speed to clear ground obstacles and become airborne.
With continued developments in battery technology, it has become possible to electrify or hybridise the conventional design of STOLs, retaining the requirement of a short runway.
There have been several pilot trials for the implementation of eSTOLs within the commercial markets, looking at both passenger and cargo transportations.
UAM implementation and certification
When new aircraft are designed and developed their certification is mandatory for maintaining safety, security and airworthiness. Certification of novel vehicle designs can be a time-consuming and complex process.
eSTOLS provide a significantly smoother certification process as compared to electric vertical take-off and landing vehicles (eVTOLs) for example, as the baseline model (i.e. STOL) aircraft are not subject to as many critical hazards as with eVTOLs. Therefore, with the reduced risks of certification, there are potentially fewer barriers for the use of eSTOL in Advanced Air Mobility (AAM), including Urban Air Mobility (UAM), systems.
Source and suggested reading:
Airflow launches electric short-take-off and landing aircraft - AviTrader
Metro Hop electric STOL plane can get airborne off a 25-meter runway - New Atlas
Feasibility study of Short Take-off and Landing Urban Air Mobility Vehicles Using Geometry Programming - Christopher Courtin, Mich
Meet the Hybrid eSTOL, a Whole New Category of Electric Aircraft - Robb Report