Next-gen aircraft on display at Springfield airport as companies prepare for future

SPRINGFIELD — Multiple companies had the first public flights of electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft, or eVTOL, at the Springfield-Beckley Airport.

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The next generation aircraft builds on the legacy of flight in the Miami Valley, which began with the birth of aviation with Dayton’s Wright Brothers.

“Once again, our state is leading the way on advanced air mobility,” said Lt. Governor Jon Husted, director of InnovateOhio. “Whether it’s on our roads, through our workforce, at our universities, in our manufacturing facilities, or up in the sky, Ohio has the people and the industry to bring big ideas into reality, continually advancing our administration’s mission to make our state the most innovative, entrepreneurial state in the Midwest.”

The small electronic planes contain functions of both helicopters and airplane and the technology leaders say has the potential to one day lead to flying cars.

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The state estimates that the new industry has the potential to add $13 billion in market value to the state’s economy and potentially support tens of thousands of new jobs in infrastructure.

One of the companies demonstrating the new technology is Kitty Hawk, which Wednesday morning demonstrated its unmanned, winged aircraft. The other company, Lift demonstrated its aircraft during the afternoon. The Lift flight involves a manned, wingless aircraft.

The companies were joined Wednesday by leaders from the U.S. Air Force and NASA.