Natilus, a US autonomous air freight aircraft company, has announced advanced purchase commitments of more than USD6 billion for the delivery of 440+ aircraft in pre-orders, from companies including major airlines and integrators: Volatus Aerospace, Astral Aviation, Aurora International, Dymond, Flexport, and others to be announced. Last week, according to a company press release, Flexport completed a USD900 million investment round and has signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) for two 100T Natilus aircraft, with an option for a third.
“In parallel with the development of our family of autonomous aircraft, we are working closely with customers to increase the efficiency of air transportation and make it more competitive and safer than ocean shipping,” stated CEO Aleksey Matyushev. “Today, there are only two ways to move cargo internationally: by air and by sea. The difference between the cost and time of these two modes of transportation is dramatic. Sea freight is currently 13 times less expensive than air freight; but 50 times slower in delivery. Natilus intends to revolutionize the transport industry by providing the timeliness of air freight at an affordable cost reduction of 60%, making air cargo transportation substantially more competitive.”
Nautilus says it offers greater efficiency and cost-savings by providing fully autonomous aircraft and remote piloting for additional security, allowing for substantial scaling of operations for air freight. The family of cargo aircraft includes:
- 8 ton payload short-haul feeder UAV
- 60 ton payload medium/long range UAV
- 100 ton payload long-range UAV
- 130 ton payload long-range UAV
“The market for autonomous cargo aircraft is greater than USD280 billion, based on the latest market report,” said the company. “However, the company believes with its price point, it will introduce a new category of freight – expanding the air freight market to USD470 billion. Natilus aircraft use existing ground infrastructure and standard air cargo containers, to produce an innovative turnkey solution for its customers.
Natilus aircraft will be able to increase cargo volume by 60%, while cutting costs by 60% and lowering carbon emissions by half, said the press release.
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