(Bloomberg) -- US aviation regulators proposed standards for an air taxi made by Joby Aviation Inc., paving the way for the first official certification of the novel electric aircraft.
The Federal Aviation Administration on Monday revealed “airworthiness criteria” for Joby’s JAS4-1, a four-passenger craft designed to lift off like a helicopter and then fly horizontally like a plane. The action, which gives the public and industry 30 days to comment, lays out the steps Joby would take to get agency approval.
The announcement is a significant milestone for Joby and could become a template for other air-taxi manufacturers trying to create a new form of urban transportation. Multiple hurdles remain before Joby can begin carrying passengers for hire as it attempts to become an airline and the government creates new regulations to oversee such operations.
The FAA, which was criticized by some companies earlier this year after changing how it planned to review new flight technologies, said the Joby action shows it is “using existing regulations” to assess the new designs.
Delta Air Lines Inc. agreed last month to invest at least $60 million in Joby, which plans to fly people to airports in New York and Los Angeles. Toyota Motor Corp. is also an investor.
Joby’s shares fell 1.3% at 9:32 a.m. in New York. The stock declined 37% this year through Friday’s close.
--With assistance from Thomas Black.
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