Bell has added another partner to its vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) vehicle development efforts, this week announcing a teaming agreement with Electric Power Systems (EPS) for the development of energy storage systems. EPS develops batteries, power electronics, thermal management systems, and battery management systems. Bell said the energy storage system will be used as part of a hybrid propulsion system.
“This collaboration with EPS is intended to further enhance the safety and performance of our aircraft through unique power storage capabilities,” said Bell v-p of innovation Scott Drennan. “As we forge relationships with new teammates, we move one step closer to bringing a viable urban air mobility to the everyday commuter.”
According to EPS CEO Nathan Millecam, “The energy storage system enables our battery module to improve life, reduce cost, and meet stringent FAA safety requirements around cell containment in thermal runaway at a very light weight.”
EPS joins a Bell VTOL/urban air-taxi team that includes Safran (hybrid propulsion), Garmin (autonomous vehicle management computer systems), and Thales (flight control systems and avionics).