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      United Airlines reveals first eVTOL passenger route starting in 2025 / ArsTechnica · Friday, 24 March, 2023 - 14:40

    An Archer eVTOL aircraft wearing the United livery takes off, with more eVTOL craft in the background

    Enlarge / United has chosen its hometown of Chicago for the country's first commercial eVTOL route. (credit: Archer Aviation)

    In 2025, United Airlines will fly an air taxi service between the downtown Vertiport Chicago and O'Hare International Airport, using electric vertical takeoff and landing aircraft it is purchasing from Archer Aviation. The Archer Midnight eVTOL aircraft will complete the route in about 10 minutes; according to local resident and Ars Managing Editor Eric Bangeman, that journey by car can take over an hour due to road construction.

    "Both Archer and United are committed to decarbonizing air travel and leveraging innovative technologies to deliver on the promise of the electrification of the aviation industry," said Michael Leskinen, president of United Airlines Ventures. "Once operational, we're excited to offer our customers a more sustainable, convenient, and cost-effective mode of transportation during their commutes to the airport."

    United placed an order for 200 eVTOL aircraft from Archer back in 2021 at a cost of $1 billion. The startup has also raised money from the automaker Stellantis, which has been helping the company with making carbon fiber composites.

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      Hacking the JFK Airport Taxi Dispatch System / Schneier · Wednesday, 21 December, 2022 - 19:06

    Two men have been convicted of hacking the taxi dispatch system at the JFK airport. This enabled them to reorder the taxis on the list; they charged taxi drivers $10 to cut the line.

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      The art and science of boarding an airplane in a pandemic

      WIRED · / ArsTechnica · Saturday, 23 January, 2021 - 12:45

    During the pandemic, several airlines have switched boarding procedures to create more distance between passengers.

    Enlarge / During the pandemic, several airlines have switched boarding procedures to create more distance between passengers. (credit: Nicholas Economou | NurPhoto | Getty Images)

    Jason Steffen studies planets in other solar systems. His most famous work—OK, second-most famous work—was with NASA ’s Kepler Mission, a survey of planetary systems. But you’re more likely to have heard of Steffen, a professor at the University of Nevada at Las Vegas, in a very different context: as a student of the airplane boarding process . Years ago, after waiting in yet another line on a jam-packed jetway, the physicist thought to himself, “There has to be a better way than this.”

    Airlines are invested in boarding times—and to a lesser extent, offboarding—because time equals money. Flying people around the world is a low-margin business, and the faster you can get a flight loaded, into the air, and then emptied on the ground, the faster you can get the next round of paying customers into the air.

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