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EFKO Group of Companies has created a prototype of a two-seat unmanned air taxi Hi-Fly Taxi, the first flight of which was performed in October 2021. Its development began 4 years ago at Biryuch corporate innovation center in Alekseevka.

As of today, EFKO has invested more than 1 billion rubles in the project. In the future, the company intends to attract third-party investors for financing: preliminary agreements with a number of banks and investment funds have been reached. The project development will require 3.8 billion rubles for the period up to 2024.

“We see the future in de-urbanization and the opportunity to live in the outskirts and be able to get to big cities quickly and safely. It is UAV that can become a massive and affordable solution to achieve this goal. The Hi-Fly Taxi project is the most important part of our investment in innovation that will create the future we want to live in with healthy food and eco-friendly and comfortable living environment," Sergey Ivanov, the Executive Director and member of the Board of Directors of EFKO says.

EFKO expects to put the air taxi into serial production and into commercial operation by 2027. The company is planning to achieve the following target performance characteristics by this time:
The vehicle is equipped with 16 electric motors located in two plains on composite beams that can withstand 500 kg of load to increase stability and flight safety. Even if 3 engines fail, Hi-Fly Taxi will be able to continue flying and land. In addition, the vehicle will be equipped with a parachute security system.

Lithium-ion batteries are used at the first stage for all systems testing. However, in the future, batteries on solid oxide fuel cells are considered as the most promising solution to achieve the target characteristics and for the possibility of operation in Russian climate, including the conditions of the Far North, on which EFKO is working in collaboration with the Institute of Solid State Physics of the Russian Academy of Sciences and the leading Russian scientists.

The company has already developed and patented a number of technical solutions, including a cabin design with panoramic windows, a propeller group with 100 kg of thrust at 16 kW of energy consumption, an aramid chassis that provides double-sided shock absorption, and a load of up to 4 tons.