The impact of the emergence of the AAM on business aviation and French airports

February 9, 2023

Theimpact of the emergence of the AAM on business aviation and French airports

Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) is gradually beginning to be recognized as a viable and innovative means of passenger transport in the medium term.

The acceleration of the development of this new mode of transportation is due to significant investments in vertical take-off and landing vehicles (VTOL) or in new hybrid fixed-wing platforms. For the record, this sector has recorded significant investments of more than 5.8 billion dollars in 2021(Source: Disrupting the future of mobility - Deloitte).

The AAM promises to save passengers time and money on short routes that are not currently relevant for business or commercial aviation. Similarly, the electric or hybrid engines planned for these flying machines will contribute to the transition to low-carbon aviation.

The way they will be marketed and the actual use cases remain unclear for the moment, but it is possible to imagine that the most common uses between now and 2030 will be similar to business aviation or helicopters in highly congested areas, given the posted sales prices and operational constraints.

Several operators and players in the on-demand aviation value chain have already positioned themselves and plan to take advantage of the AAM by using it as a "flying cab". In the meantime, to meet these time-saving needs on regional routes, the rapidly expanding turboprop business aviation and helicopter are two relevant solutions.

The cost per km and the door-to-door time savings are the main criteria for the growth of these modes of transport among customers. Thus, every day in São Paulo, hundreds of people choose a 10-minute helicopter trip rather than a 4-hour car journey. The time saved justifies the cost of the trip, which averages around 1000 €. What would happen to this demand if this price dropped significantly?

This analysis proposes to estimate the effects of lower business aviation prices through new STOL or VTOL hubs with more efficient propulsion and optimized flight distribution on sub-regional passenger transportation and airports by 2030.

Our results:

An increase of 104 aircraft based in France and an increase of 40,000 movements per year can be expected by 2030. This growth translates into quantifiable economic benefits for airport managers. With revenues generated by 500 €/month per based aircraft and an average income of 75 €/landing, an increase of 3.5 million € of turnover per year is expected for all airport managers in France, on these items.

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