Agenda

Day 1 — November 2

12:30 - 1:00PM Winning Hearts and Minds: The Future Role of UAM for Emergency Management and Disaster Response

Achieving true public acceptance of unmanned air mobility technology will require more than just moving people faster and more efficiently. Complex emergencies and major disasters continue to garner immense public interest. In this session, we'll explore the future ability of UAM technology to significantly impact how emergencies are managed and help shape perceptions surrounding UAM for good.

Christopher Todd
Executive Director
Airborne International Response Team (AIRT)


Dawn Zoldi
President
UAS Colorado

12:30 - 1:00PM Equity and Justice is More than a Debate About "Unmanned"

Do the concepts of equity and justice apply to UAVs? From who makes them to who uses them to who receives something from them (books from Amazon? leaflets from the health department? bathtubs and crosscut saws from Montgomery Ward?) to data collection (photo/chemical/bio/other) to who might be affected en route, this session will explore the touchpoints and implications of passenger and freight autonomous vehicles in modern society.

Steven Polunsky
Director
Alabama Transportation Policy Research Center


Rhonda Binda
Deputy Queens Borough President
City of New York

1:00 - 2:00PM Agility Prime Accelerates eVTOL Development

The United States Air Force launched Agility Prime in 2020, a non-traditional program seeking to accelerate the commercial market for advanced air mobility vehicles. The Innovative Capabilities Opening (ICO), established a rapid contracting mechanism with a “Race to Certification” series. The Air Race is a three-phase path to military certification and potential procurement while accelerating commercialization of this revolutionary technology. These flights will provide an opportunity to assess the utility of the aircraft in missions like distributed logistics, medical evacuation, firefighting, disaster response, search and rescue, and humanitarian-relief operations. Additionally, such flight tests could generate data to support the FAA certification enabling a broader commercial market. In this session you will learn more about ICO, Area of Interest, In-kind testing, Military Airworthiness process, and more.

Darshan "Dash" Divakaran
Senior Operations Research Analyst AFWERX


Lt. Col Thomas Meagher "WCMD"
Division Chief
AFWERX Prime


Major John Tekell "Wasp"
Agility Prime Lead, Deputy Division Chief
AFWERX Prime


George Griffiths "Hogg"
AFWERX Chief of Engineering, Test and Safety
AFWERX

2:00 - 2:30PM Modeling the Environmental Impacts of Urban Air Mobility: Case Study of Tampa Bay Region

Urban Air Mobility (UAM) is an emerging concept proposed in recent years that uses electric vertical take-off and landing vehicles (eVTOLs), which is expected to offer an alternative way of transporting passengers and goods in urban areas with significantly improved mobility by making use of low-altitude airspace. Our previous study answered planning questions in terms of optimal vertiport locations and estimation of diverted demand from ground transportation by combining network design and travel mode choice models. Although eVTOLs generate zero air pollutant emissions during operations, the impact to the region will be dependent on the energy resources of local power companies while generating the electricity and if eVTOLs are operated efficiently to serve passengers. In this study, we took Tampa Bay Region as our study case and modeled the environmental impacts of UAM implementation, focusing on comparison of air pollutant emissions between existing transportation modes and multimodal UAM for diverted demand. We also did sensitivity analysis to demonstrate how the impacts would vary with the increase of electric vehicle penetrations in the region and for different regions given their electricity production source profiles. The outcomes help stakeholders improve their awareness of the emerging UAM and provide assists in policy making.

Yu Zhang
Professor
University of South Florida (USF)

2:45 - 3:15PM Multi-mode Sensing and Fusion for UAM eVTOL Safety

The vision of opening the third dimension, i.e., altitude, for urban/regional transportation has gained substantial interest in the last 5–10 years, with significant efforts to explore the so-called on-demand air mobility (ODAM). The key idea behind ODAM is to use eVTOL (electric vertical takeoff and landing) vehicles for inter- and intracity commutes. These small vehicles (usually anticipated to fly 1–4 people) are envisioned to provide line-by- sight flights at affordable prices, while providing a safe and enjoyable flight experience. Their ability to perform vertical takeoff/landing enables them to be operated on small-size port infrastructure. A successful implementation of ODAM requires not only the development of new technologies, including vehicle design and advances in engine/propulsion technology, but also considerations of novel operational patterns, concerning its on-demand characteristics. ODAM has the potential to radically change our view of urban/regional mobility & save people’s daily commute time, as well as on regional thin-haul connections. In this session we cover enabling sensors and software stack.

Maha Achour, PhD
EO, CTO, Founder
Metawave Corporation


Daniel W. Bliss
Director of WISCA
Center for Wireless Information Systems and Computational Architectures


Dr. Lisa Kearney
Engineering Fellow
Raytheon Technologies


Andrew Torgesen
Perception Engineer
Anduril Industries

3:00 - 3:30PM AUVSI Session

As we continue to work towards commercial UAS integration, AUVSI is also looking ahead at autonomous AAM operations, and opportunities to learn from and cooperate with the UAS industry, especially as it relates to advocacy and public perception. This panel will focus on the shared areas of interest between the UAS and AAM industry, including certifying autonomy, public acceptance, and local infrastructure demands, challenges, & opportunities.

3:30 - 4:00PM Daily Recap Session

Presenters from the day get together to discuss highlights, impressions, and answer attendee questions.

Day 2 — November 3

12:30 - 1:00PM UAM in the NAS: Safety Above All

As the national airspace (NAS) evolves to accommodate autonomous vehicles, safety will become more critical. A more complex NAS will require more integrated methods to identify, assess, and mitigate risks, in time. In UAM in the NAS: Safety Above All, Dr. Wendy A. Okolo will describe NASA’s efforts through the System-Wide Safety project in fostering a safe and transformed NAS. Specifically, she will describe the Services, Functions, and Capabilities (SFCs) that will enable the development of an integrated aviation safety management system for emerging operations.

Dr. Wendy Okolo

12:30 - 1:00PM Certifiable Detect and Avoid Solutions for UAS and UAM/AAM

Learn the state of FAA/RTCA specs & descriptions of certifiable ACAS-based Detect & Avoid systems for UAS & unmanned rotorcraft, including UAM/AAM vehicles.

Tom Furey
CEO
Sagetech Avionics

1:00 - 1:30PM UTM and CAAS: Safe Autonomy in the Low-Altitude Airspace

Hobby and commercial UAS are poised to dominate the low-altitude airspace, and the aviation world is turning to the UAS Traffic Management (UTM) framework to digitally coordinate the influx of UAS traffic. In this presentation, we will show how Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory and industry partners are using the Complex Assured Autonomous Systems (CAAS) simulator prove that UTM autonomy is up to the challenge.

Dr. Sebastian Zanlongo
Research Scientist
Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory


Mr. Tyler Young
Software Engineer
Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory

1:00 - 1:30PM Run-Time Assurance for UAM Safety and Certification

Emerging Urban Air Mobility vehicles and use cases are driving a variety of needs for safety critical algorithms that differ significantly from those in current generation certified aircraft. Ensuring the safety of these algorithms and achieving certification of systems using these algorithms presents a major challenge, and a critical barrier to realizing the potential of UAM.

The need for algorithmic innovation is driven partly by novel vehicles, many of which incorporate distributed electric propulsion systems and mode transitions from hover mode for take-off and landing to a wing-borne flight mode to provide greater range. These systems often involve a large number of individual propulsion components and actuators, leading to a large number of potential failure modes. Though the reduced moving parts count of electric propulsion systems can yield high reliability, failures and damage will still occur. Further, such vehicles have expansive flight envelopes that range from hover to high-speed cruise, which often include a continuum of potential mechanical configurations as the vehicle transitions through these operating conditions. Combining the potential failure modes with this broad range of vehicle dynamic characteristics results in a large space of conditions over which a control system must be robust. Additionally, the urban canyon is a challenging environment with weather hazards that can be difficult to predict accurately, complex flow phenomena and disturbances caused by inter-vehicle and structure wake interaction, and requirements for very high precision maneuvering. Even to be operated like a current-generation vehicle, emerging UAM vehicles will need enhanced capabilities to identify and adapt to failures, and provide robustness to environment hazards, while providing highly precise maneuvering capabilities.

New operating concepts will also drive a need for new algorithms. In particular, UAM concepts generally include higher levels of autonomy to reduce the training requirements for onboard pilots and ultimately to eliminate onboard pilots. Deep learning approaches and other types of AI algorithms are key components in long-term UAM concepts, enabling capabilities such as automated obstacle detection and collision avoidance, and intelligent interaction with the future airspace system.

The types of algorithms that will meet emerging needs driven by both new vehicles and operating concepts present significant certification challenges, including non-deterministic behavior, and lack of explainability. Run-Time Assurance (RTA) methods offer the most practical path to safety assurance and certification for many of the novel algorithms needed to make UAM vehicles and the UAM system function. RTA provides a framework for using algorithms in safety critical roles, even if they cannot be developed to the required assurance level. RTA pairs an advanced but low-assurance algorithm with a failsafe alternative algorithm that can facilitate a safe landing and can be developed to a higher assurance level. The RTA system monitors operation of the advanced algorithm and, in the event the algorithm fails, switches to the failsafe algorithm quickly enough to ensure safe recovery. While the capability to complete the mission may be lost when a switch occurs, safety of the aircraft and its occupants is not compromised.

Ongoing work is demonstrating the value of RTA architectures specifically for the certification of distributed electric propulsion (DEP) VTOL aircraft. This work develops relevant example applications and examines the potential of RTA to simplify the development activities required by civilian regulatory environments and relevant industry standards. Example applications include the use of RTA techniques to facilitate certified implementations of dynamic adaptive control to compensate for low-altitude urban turbulence, adaptive tracking control for minimum-energy path following capabilities, and automated emergency col.

Alec J. Bateman, PhD
Technical Director
Barron Associates, Inc


Michael D. DeVore
Principal Research Scientist
Barron Associates, Inc


John D. Schierman, Ph.D.
Senior Research Aerospace Engineer
Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL/RQQA)

1:30 - 2:00PM Cross-cutting Impacts of Weather on UAM

Adverse weather has and will continue to have significant cross-cutting influence and impacts on aviation, from safety to passenger experience to operator revenue. This panel will focus on the potential cross-cutting weather impacts to UAM, ranging from public acceptance to vehicle and traffic management implications. The panel will also explore strategies that could be explored to mitigate these impacts.

Basil Yap
President
AeroX

James Grimsley
Executive Director - Advanced Technology Initiatives
Choctaw Nation of Oklahoma


Rohit Goyal
Lead Product Engineer
Joby Aviation

2:00 - 2:30PM Community Integration of Advanced Air Mobility

As the AAM industry matures, a considerable amount of planning is needed to integrate these new aviation technologies into existing communities and metropolitan regions safely and smartly. This session will discuss those planning considerations, roles of various key stakeholders, and what steps industry and communities can take now to lay the foundation for AAM/UAM integration. This session will also discuss key questions which must be addressed for AAM/UAM to become a reality, such as community engagement, integration into transportation systems, existing infrastructure vs. new infrastructure, and community priorities.

Scott Gore
FAA

Yolanka Wulff
CAMI


Nancy Mendonca
NASA

2:00 - 2:30PM UAM From a Rider’s View: From Planning Through Arrival

Today’s riders utilize a variety of travel modalities within an urban setting; soon there will be another choice for riders in the form of an air taxi. What are a rider’s considerations and expectations as this new option becomes reality? In this presentation we will explore what might make this option viable and possibly even preferred for several rider personas.

Michael McNair
Vice President – Aerospace
SAE Industry Technologies Consortia

2:45 - 3:15PM Vertiport Automation and Operation

Panel will discuss Vertiport Automation and Operations. The industry is somewhat fragmented, and the vision is improving but largely unclear on how vertiports will be integrated with VTOL aircraft, fleet operators, air charter brokers, and an unmanned aircraft system (UAS) traffic management (UTM)-inspired provider of services to UAM (PSU) Network. Panelists will highlight their vision as future technology developers and innovators in creating solutions to address some of these concerns from a global perspective.

Amit Ganjoo
Founder and CEO
ANRA Technologies

Tom Davis
Vice President, Science and Research Programs
Crown Consulting Inc.

Paul McDuffee
Sr. Manager, Regulatory Policy
Hyundai Genesis Air Mobility

2:45 - 3:15PM Realizing UAM: A Look at How PSUs Drive Optimization Needed to Scale UAM

It’s no secret that the future of transportation lies in the skies above us, as Urban Air Mobility (UAM) enables a safe and efficient aviation system to transport passengers or cargo within urban and suburban areas. And while industry has spent substantial resources on ensuring vehicle certification and regulation - an important piece of the puzzle must also be adequately addressed: the routing, scheduling, and optimization of vehicles and their operations. Further, how will ecosystem participants discover, utlize, and share vertiplex resources with limited availability, such as vertiports, corridors, and approach/departure routes.

NASA and OneSky recently teamed up to address just this, via their research project “UAM Routing and Scheduling in Dynamic and Discoverable Urban Environments.” Together they seek to advance the understanding and methods of UAM traffic management by exploring UAM routing and scheduling in the context of an accurate, physics-based, and dynamic airspace environment.

In this session, OneSky airspace experts will discuss the results of the research with NASA, including how a UAM Scheduling Module can maximize the capacity and efficiency of UAM traffic, and how a UAM Aeronautical Information Management (UAM-AIM) application provides the aeronautical and geospatial information necessary to characterize the UAM airspace and environment. This session is for all stakeholders who wish to better understand the impact of dynamic urban operations and the relevant constraints and the potential impact on efficiency and safety.

Daniel Honaker
Head of International Implementation
OneSky

Erick Corona
Director of Product Management
Wisk

3:15 - 3:45PM On-board Embedded Failure-phobic Operations Environment for Autonomous Vehicles

Autonomous vehicles in the constrained environment of Advanced Air Mobility require a safety level that exceeds today's air vehicle and space safety levels. To address this challenge, we describe an on-board equipment management network focused on coupling pro-active detection of equipment deterioration with contingency handling procedures.

Tom Freund
Owner
Dig.y.SoL

3:15 - 3:45PM SAE Activities on Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) and Urban Air Mobility (UAM)

To fulfill its lofty mission of advancing mobility knowledge and solutions for the benefit of humanity, SAE International shares its vision for connecting UAS and UAM professionals across the globe while helping create necessary standards and peer-reviewed content within the industry.

Mark Deangelo



All times are Eastern Daylight Time (EDT)