airsight has been appointed by SEA Milan Airports to carry out a feasibility study evaluating potential vertiport locations in Milan and Lombardy region to support the development of a vertiport network in preparation for 2026 Winter Olympics.
This feasibility and site selection study has been based on a passenger demand analysis performed by the Politecnico Milano, identifying potential destinations to serve with eVTOL aircraft. It considered the urban structure, in particular the areas available for the development of properly sized vertiports, as well as surrounding structures potentially posing obstacles in the approach and departure paths. These aspects have been found to be the major challenges in given urban environments.
Having in mind the foreseen vertiport network, the given airspace structure and associated restrictions have been taken into account. Special attention was paid to the development of vertiports at existing aerodromes, in this case the airports of Malpensa and Linate. Including airports in a vertiport network offers both advantages and challenges. On one hand airports generate passenger demand for fast and individual connections to the city centre as well as suburban and rural communities. At the same time, it is of paramount importance to avoid conflicts with conventional air traffic.
With a suitable vertiport site selected, draft airfield designs have been generated aiming for an efficient use of the limited space for FATO, taxiways and parking stands as well as for ground access, terminal building and maintenance facilities. Based on the European Prototype Technical Specifications for the Design of Vertiports published by EASA, appropriate visual aids, namely airfield ground markings and lights, were drafted. What is more, an agnostic approach was followed to ensure that the eVTOL designs currently under development could be accommodated.
With the feasibility study to evaluate potential vertiport locations in Milan and Lombardy region being completed, airsight is looking forward to seeing the further development of the associated vertiport network and, eventually, the operation of eVTOL aircraft in and around Milan in 2026.