Project introduction ---

The AiRMOUR project increased Urban Air Mobility competence

Artikkelikuva: Project introduction

Slowly but steadily, transport and mobility is expanding into the third dimension – the airspace. AiRMOUR was a research and innovation project supporting sustainable air mobility in urban contexts via emergency and medical services. It ran between January 2021 and December 2023.

With drones holding a great promise for time and cost savings, the EU-funded AiRMOUR project focused on researching and validating novel concepts for one of the most critical and fast-rising real-life applications of Urban Air Mobility (UAM): Emergency Medical Services. Within the AiRMOUR project, air vehicles used for urgent medical purposes were validated in real-life demonstrations in Stavanger (Norway), Helsinki (Finland) and in Kassel, in the region of Nord-Hessen (Germany). As goes for all new technologies, there were – and still are – challenges to overcome related to technology, regulations and public acceptance.

Cities need to start integrating air mobility in their urban planning processes. To manage this, they needed good information, more knowledge and better tools. AiRMOUR drastically advanced the understanding of necessary near-future actions – not only by urban communities, but also by operators, regulators, academia and businesses in order to build a more sustainable future in the lower aispace of our cities.

AiRMOUR carried out research on EMS UAM business models for companies and public / medical sector, Cyber security, privacy issues, visual pollution, noise, ground risk and landing site management, Life Cycle Analysis, air risk and supporting technologies. But also, notably relevant for municipalities, on how to integrate UAM into existing policy plans, on public acceptance and developed a training curriculum.

The main outputs of the project are the following:

  • UAM Guidebook for notably cities but also operators and other stakeholders
  • A public acceptance dataset, the second-largest in Europe, with close to 2500 survey respondents.
  • A wide-range UAM Training Programme in cooperation with Eurocontrol, consisting of 3 online courses and 2 in-person Masterclasses
  • UAM GIS tool for urban planners
  • A Life Cycle Analysis model to calculate a CO2 footprint of a UAM service
  • A range of business models for emergency medical services
  • Validation flights in 3 municipalities, accompanied by a Roadshow

All outputs of the AiRMOUR project are reviewed and tested by cities and replicators. Consequently, the most crucial impact of the project has been the increased urban air mobility competence of city and regional staff and their partners in public transport, energy, innovation and funding.

The AiRMOUR consortium with research institutes, national aviation authorities, drone operators, regional and local authorities and Emergency Medical Services providers has significantly brought urgent medical drone services forward between 2021 and 2023.

The role of Forum Virium Helsinki

Forum Virium Helsinki was the leader of the Work Package on Dissemination, Communication and Exploitation. This entailed, among others, raising awareness of the project and its progress, promoting the outcomes, cooperating with other European projects on the similar topic, organising the large Final Conference, creating attractive materials such as 4 project videos and coordinating a group of Replicator Cities as well as establishing and managing an international advisory board.

Another important role for Forum Virium Helsinki was to validate the research via test flights in Helsinki. In April 2023, a successful flight by a small drone carrying an epipen to the scene of a staged accident took place from Kaivopuisto to Suomenlinna. The following day, a Roadshow with a passenger drone and the smaller cargo drone was set up at the FinnHEMS base at Vantaa airport. FinnHEMS is responsible for medical emergency flights by helipcopter all around Finland. Medical staff and heliopcter pilots could sit in the passenger drone to experience how such a machine could be an addition to the helicopter fleet. The day after, the Roadshow moved to Kansalaistori, a square in the centre of Helsinki. The target audience was citizens, who could also sit in the passenger drone, watch the small drone, view videos on the project, complete surveys on public acceptance and ask questions from project members and drone operators.

In addition to the project-wide communication work and the Helsinki flights and Roadshow, Forum Virium Helsinki was also responsible to contribute to each of the other work packages. It included contributing to scenario development, studying risks, looking into suitable landing sites and contributing to simulations. Assessing the impact of UAM on existing regulations and the way to integrate (future) drone services in mobility plans and urban development was also an important task. Furthermore, Forum Virium carries out work on public acceptance and attitudes via expert-interviews, citizen questionnaires and focus groups. For many of these tasks, Forum Virium worked closely with stakeholders in the city, such as the planning department and healthcare services.

Benefits for Helsinki

Cities can only be as smart as the people who live there, which means knowledge exchange and education are crucial factors. AiRMOUR helped Helsinki to prepare for a possible future where drones are icreasinly common. The project provided the city and its partners with knowledge of these new drone technologies, the possible place in our city of the future and hands-on experience with different air mobility scenarios.


1.1.2021 – 31.12.2023


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 101006601. The European Comission has awarded funding of approximately €6 million for the AiRMOUR consortium. Forum Virium Helsinki received a budget of €490,500.