Oregon’s Department of Aviation is developing plans to use Jump Aero’s JA1 Pulse eVTOL aircraft for emergency-response operations across the state. Under a memorandum of understanding signed on November 28, the state government entered a partnership with the California-based start-up to explore how the aircraft could be deployed to support rural communities.
The agreement indicates that up to 126 of the in-development JA1 Pulse aircraft could be needed in Oregon to get medical and other professionals to the scene of an emergency as quickly as possible. Due to the large distances and challenging terrain in the state, response times to remote areas can be longer than the eight-minute target deemed necessary to improve survival rates.
Emergency-response Pilots Needed
With a payload capacity of 330 pounds (150 kilograms), the JA1 is intended to be flown by a single emergency responder and carry medical equipment, to support on-site assistance rather than carrying patients to a hospital. With a dash speed of up to 250 knots, the JA1 is designed to be deployed within 60 seconds and arrive at a patient location within 31 miles (50 kilometers) in under eight minutes.
Performance specifications include the ability to hover at a density altitude of 9,500 feet (2,900 meters) with one failed propulsor. The JA1 will be capable of all-azimuth hover in winds up to 20 knots and landing on slopes up to 10 degrees.
The eVTOL is a tail-sitting aircraft with two wings and eight non-articulating electric propulsion units mounted above the pilot’s head height “for operational safety,” according to Jump Aero. A ballistic parachute provides backup safety.
“We look forward to building a long-term relationship with Jump Aero as we explore providing rapid first response to our rural communities with the JA1 Pulse,” said Kenji Sugahara, director of Oregon’s Department of Aviation. “We are excited to be bringing cutting-edge solutions to Oregon residents, which will positively impact their health and lives in such a dramatic way.”
According to Jump Aero, it is working with multiple state and tribal governments in the U.S. to develop plans for eVTOL emergency-response services. In September, Denmark-based emergency-response operator Falck signed a contract to purchase a JA2 Pulse aircraft.