The Danish company Copenhagen Helicopter and their partner Copenhagen AirTaxi – both based at Roskilde Airport – have signed a letter of intent with Dufour Aerospace for a conditional order to purchase the Aero2 UAV for cargo and aerial work and the Aero3 for passenger transportation. The aim is to strengthen their initiatives to introduce environmentally friendly and efficient transportation in Denmark and the neighbouring countries of Germany, Sweden and Norway.
“With Dufour’s 8-seater Aero3 electric hybrid aircraft, we want to build on this initiative and extend the possibilities to the remaining rural areas of Denmark, including many of its small islands, where constructing an airfield is either distant or not feasible. Our goal is to create affordable and swift connectivity that is accessible to all,” says Henrik Bendix, co-founder of Copenhagen Helicopter.
The aim is to establish a route between Odense and possibly other parts of the southern Funen archipelago with the Aero2 for cargo purposes by 2026, initially on a trial basis. This will serve as a learning process for the operation and maintenance of Dufour’s tiltwing aircraft. Once the equivalent but larger 8-seater Aero3 is ready in 2030, Copenhagen Helicopter plan to expand the service to include passenger transport in this region and beyond.
“Dufour Aerospace is very pleased to be part of this great initiative in Denmark,” says Thomas Pfammatter, CEO and co-founder of Dufour Aerospace. “Efficiency, safety and operational versatility are key to providing our customers with a useful product. In an area with huge geographical obstacles, these aircraft have the potential to change the transportation setup of a country. This is true for Aero2 in uncrewed critical cargo applications and for Aero3 in crewed aviation. These aircraft will make connectivity and logistics dramatically simpler, more ecologic and cheaper than today, and Denmark is an ideal place for this,” says Thomas Pfammatter, CEO and co-founder of Dufour Aerospace.
A versatile type of aircraft with many possibilities
“The Aero2 is a drone that can lift up to 40 kg of freight or equipment such as valuable cargo, cameras, etc., while the Aero3 aircraft is a 7-seater passenger aircraft plus a pilot,” explains Martin Winther Andersen, co-founder and CEO of Copenhagen Helicopter, and he goes on to explain: “Within AAM (Advanced Air Mobility) we focus on aircraft that can develop public transportation in a third dimension, that are electric in the future, have a short charging time and can operate in all weather conditions. Dufour’s Aero3 is one of few aircraft that can meet all these requirements with the proven tiltwing design.”
“In addition to electric flight, it also has the option to fly as a hybrid. A small combustion engine running on Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) can provide electric power onboard and a range of up to 1,000 km, giving us new opportunities to look at our neighbouring countries and serve parts of the country where charging infrastructure can be a challenge.”
About Dufour Aerospace
Dufour Aerospace develops efficient and ecological aircraft for patient and passenger transport, logistics and public safety. Dufour Aerospace’s designs currently under development rely on the tilt-wing principle. They take-off and land vertically in the smallest space like a helicopter but fly as fast and economically as an airplane. While the propellers are electric-driven, hybrid elements (conventional combustion engines or fuel cells) ensure a sufficiently long range. The first product Dufour Aerospace will launch is the Aero2, an uncrewed aerial vehicle specifically designed for the transportation of critical cargo such as medical supplies of up to 40 kilograms/88 pounds in medium to long range distances. The manned Aero3, featuring a spacious cabin with eight seats and large doors, is the next aircraft in development by Dufour Aerospace.