EVA announced today it is working with The Michigan Economic Development Corporation (MEDC), together with Gerald R. Ford International Airport Authority, Southwest Airlines® and Stantec Generation AV through the Ford Launchpad for Innovative Technologies and Entrepreneurship (FLITE).
FLITE, which MEDC says was first launched in January 2022 provides grants and testing opportunities to companies focused on bringing emerging air travel solutions to market. The five latest recipients will complete pilot testing and development of new products and services in the West Michigan-based Gerald R. International Airport. The second round of recipients include:
- Aircraft Data Fusion: Utilizing web-based cloud solutions to provide real-time passenger forecasting.
- Dataspeed: Revolutionizing aviation operations with the Kinetic360 Autonomous Service Vehicle.
- EVA: Retooling EVA’s drone infrastructure to provide airport services to revolutionize baggage delivery.
- Renu Robotics: Revolutionizing the way aviation facilities conduct vegetation management with autonomous lawn mowers.
- Spotter: Developing innovative sensor technology to help travellers identify open parking spots.
EVA reports that it was very interested in the proposed project at FLITE because it addresses one of the key challenges – and opportunities – of this century for transporting people and goods.
The company says “We will demonstrate through different use cases how goods can be dispatched seamlessly, and how the airport user experience can be enhanced. Airports are essential to connecting people to the world or transporting goods wherever needed. New airborne ecosystems in the last decade also transport goods, and soon people, through unmanned autonomous systems or drones. Very few initiatives, however, work on the integration of these two ecosystems for a more efficient first, middle and last mile.
“With our first operations in Michigan, we aim at not only build a great case for airports around the world but also set Michigan as a significant hub for a future North Drone Super Highway. EVA has the largest drone infrastructure on the market, with more than eight stations, allowing transportation of payloads up to 250 kilos. EVA is now operating on 4 continents and is the world leading company for drone infrastructure helping drone operators to accomplish fantastic missions anywhere, anytime.”
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