Archer Aviation Secures $142 Million Contract with U.S. Air Force for Military eVTOL Development

Archer Aviation Secures $142 Million Contract with U.S. Air Force for Military eVTOL Development

Archer Aviation, a prominent player in the Electronic Vertical Takeoff and Landing (eVTOL) industry, has recently announced a significant milestone in its collaboration with the U.S. Air Force. The company has secured a $142 million contract to develop a military version of its Midnight "air taxi" aircraft. Following the news, Archer's stock witnessed a remarkable 33 percent surge, as reported by Reuters.

Under the agreement, Archer will be tasked with developing an eVTOL aircraft tailored to meet military requirements. The Midnight eVTOL is designed to carry a pilot and four passengers up to a distance of 100 miles, opening up new possibilities for military applications. The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) has been engaged in a partnership with Archer since 2021, as part of the USAF AFWERX Agility Prime program, exploring the integration of eVTOL technologies into emerging platforms for the Air Force and other military branches.

Archer's Midnight air vehicle, unveiled last November, promises an impressive payload capacity of over 1,000 pounds, with short charging times between trips. The company targets FAA certification by 2024, with commercial service expected to commence in the following year. Noise reduction is a key feature of the aircraft, as it aims to operate at a noise signature 1,000 times quieter than a helicopter, at a cruise altitude of 2,000 feet.

Col. Tom Meagher, leading AFWERX Agility Prime programs, stated that the contract with Archer Aviation will play a pivotal role in unlocking the numerous benefits that eVTOL technology has to offer the U.S. military. Archer's CEO, Adam Goldstein, emphasized that the development and commercialization of eVTOL technology remain a national priority. He also revealed that the contract includes pilot training and a maintenance program, and the six aircraft to be delivered to the USAF will be utilized for logistics and rescue missions, rather than combat operations.
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