Joby’s first production-conforming aircraft begins final assembly


The fuselage of the first aircraft to be produced heads into a large autoclave to be post cured at a precise temperature and pressure. (credit: Joby)

Joby Aviation has begun final assembly of the first aircraft to be produced at the OEM’s pilot manufacturing facility in Marina, California.

In what the firm believes to be a first for the eVTOL industry, Joby today started final assembly of its eVTOL. Having built and tested the major aerostructures – the wing, tail, and fuselage – the company is now beginning the process of fusing the aerostructures together and installing the wiring, electronics, actuation, and propulsion systems. 

Joby expects the aircraft to begin flight testing within six months. Didier Papadopoulos, Head of Aircraft OEM at Joby, said: “Beginning final assembly of our first production-conforming aircraft is an incredible achievement for the Joby team.

“Unlike a prototype, this aircraft was built with a fully-implemented quality management system, meaning we are able to trace and verify every aspect of the production of this aircraft – a huge step towards manufacturing at scale,” he added.

Joby’s quality management system includes tracking and documentation of each and every one of the aircraft’s parts, configuration management of engineering drawings, environmental conditions during fabrication and actions taken by manufacturing technicians. The system is also reviewed regularly by the FAA as part of Joby’s preparation to receive a production certificate following the type certification of its eVTOL.

Running alongside the low-rate aircraft production in Marina, Joby is evaluating proposals from a number of states to support the construction of its Phase 1 production facility.

Last week, the OEM announced it had completed the second of five stages of its Type Certification with the FAA.