Hyundai Motor Group’s Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) subsidiary, Supernal, has unveiled a partnership with Korean Air, aimed at expediting the development of an electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) vehicle, and fostering the growth of the AAM ecosystem within Korea.

This partnership marks yet another milestone in Supernal’s commitment to make AAM a dependable and efficient transportation option for everyday needs.

Under the new collaboration, both companies will engage in a range of activities, including the exchange of technical data and joint participation in workshops and programmes focused on building a robust AAM ecosystem that supports secure eVTOL operations.

As a pivotal aspect of this agreement, Korean Air will provide valuable insights into Korean-market demands and AAM aircraft specifications, influencing Supernal’s product development and market strategies. Additionally, the companies will explore efficient methods for testing Supernal’s eVTOL vehicle and AAM infrastructure networks.

Hyundai Motor Group president and Supernal CEO Jaiwon Shin said: “A core part of our strategy to advance Advanced Air Mobility is the need for robust collaboration and partnerships with industry leaders like Korean Air.

“Korean Air’s expertise in building scalable aviation systems, together with Supernal’s vision for mobility, will help usher in this exciting new era of air travel and bring us closer to global AAM operations.”

This partnership takes on particular significance in light of South Korea’s unique approach to AAM operations. The Korean government plans to leverage 5G and LTE mobile communication capabilities to facilitate seamless communication and information flow for pilots.

Furthermore, dedicated AAM operating corridors, distinct from those used by helicopters and other low-level airspace users, will be established to ensure safe and efficient travel between vertiports. This approach aims to optimize AAM routes while minimizing interactions between eVTOLs and other aircraft.

As South Korea’s largest airline, Korean Air boasts a history of shaping the nation’s aviation industry, and it is expected to play a pivotal role in advancing the AAM sector. This includes providing valuable input to Supernal on passenger experiences and operational aspects.

Supernal’s vision for a comprehensive global AAM ecosystem includes the development of aftermarket products and services, interconnected mobility solutions, both physical and digital infrastructure networks, and strategies for building and expanding the AAM workforce.

The ultimate goal is to establish a robust AAM ecosystem that will seamlessly integrate eVTOL vehicles into existing transportation networks, meeting the anticipated demand in the coming decades.

Korean Air CEO Keehong Woo said: “We will cooperate in deriving requirements for eVTOL aircraft optimized for UAM operations based on Korean Air’s accumulated data on aircraft operation and customer boarding experience.

“Based on this, we will strive to develop a business model and build an operating ecosystem suitable for Korea’s environment.”