Lilium, an electric jet startup company, has partnered with software giant Palantir to introduce what they think is the future of aero mobility.
Lilium is one of the companies to have emerged in the last 10 years with the aim to develop electric aircraft for personal transport. The company’s solution is unique, especially in their use of electric jet propulsion instead of traditional propeller technology.
Lilium’s jet offering is different from the private jets of today: The plane is 100% electric. Instead of propellers, it uses electric turbines more common with other electric prototypes currently in testing.
Based in the Bavaria, Germany, Lilium was founded in 2015 with the aim to develop vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) aircraft, that is not only fast and sustainable, but also be affordable.
The two companies commented on the crucial partnership in the video. Palantir will help Lilium with software associated with their complex Vertical Takeoff and Landing (VTOL) jet, and Palantir gets the chance to work with a company that believes it is in the infancy of future mobility.
Palantir, based in Denver, Colorado, is not the only partner of the electric jet startup. Lilium has also forged ties with other big names such as ABB, Lufthansa, Honeywell, and NetJets. Lilium’s website lists twelve corporate partners.
Personal electric jets are far from ready. Developers like Lilium must demonstrate their reliability and work with regulators like the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in the US and the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) to establish legal standards for this new technology.
Many of electric plane companies also hope that those without a pilot’s licence will be allowed to fly, posing another regulatory challenge. There's also a need to modify or develop the physical infrastructure required to allow such air-based transport to work.
Many, however, believe that with Lilium's solution as well as the ones developed by Airbus, Wright, Rolls Royce and many other companies, electric-powered aircraft transportation is no longer a question of if, but when.