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July 2, 2024

Sarasina Tuchen, former USDOT official and expert on aviation/multimodal integration, joins ASKA Advisory Board


New appointee has deep expertise in advanced aviation, GOV, private industry 

July 2, 2024 - Mountain View, CA – ASKA, Silicon Valley developer of the ASKA™ A5 roadable electric-hybrid VTOL (Vertical and Takeoff and Landing) aircraft, announced that Sarasina Tuchen has joined their Advisory Board. Ms. Tuchen is a renowned expert in advanced aviation technologies, automation, autonomy, multimodal integration, and interoperability. She has more than 35 years of experience as a private industry executive and senior federal government official.

Ms. Tuchen recently retired from federal service and served in the USDOT’s Highly Automated Systems Safety Center of Excellence as the lead of the automation strategy for the Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) Interagency Working Group, which was implementing the AAM Coordination and Leadership Act (Public Law 117-203) in coordination with 22 other federal agencies.

She has regularly advised on policy and regulatory standards on automation and autonomy, and has been a keynote speaker, expert panelist, national working group member, principal author, and international conference technical chair on emerging multimodal, air transportation technologies, and standards.

Moreover, Ms. Tuchen was the USDOT’s onsite lead at the NASA Ames Research Center and her work highlighted the importance of multimodal integration for the success of integrating these new airspace vehicles that will complement and compete with surface transportation.

“This is an exciting time at ASKA, as we progress through flight testing and the FAA type certification process,” comments Guy Kaplinsky, Cofounder/CEO. “Sarasina’s appointment to our advisory board is an important new milestone, enabling us to gain valuable expertise on how to grow ASKA to the next level of success.”

“We resonate deeply with her vision that AAM cannot scale unless it makes the maximum use of existing infrastructure. ASKA™ A5 as a roadable electric-hybrid VTOL (Vertical and Takeoff and Landing) aircraft, is uniquely positioned to use the pre-existing charging stations and scale using over 5,000 underutilized airfields already available around us in the US,” states Maki Kaplinsky, Cofounder/Chair/COO. “We are thrilled that she has agreed to share her expertise with ASKA and help us to broaden our industry partnerships.”

The size of an SUV in the drive mode, the four-seater ASKA™ A5 is the world’s first flying car that can travel by road and air with vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) and short takeoff and landing (STOL) capabilities. A5’s full-scale prototype has achieved Certificate of Authorization (COA), Special Airworthiness Certification, and was the world’s first roadable aircraft to start the type certification process with the FAA. ASKA™ A5 is progressing with flight testing and has successfully conducted hovering as well as more than 500 miles of drive testing on public roads.

ASKA™ A5 is not only capable of vertical takeoff and landing (VTOL) from a helipad or vertiport, it can enter

an airfield by driving through the airport gate, open the wings, taxi towards a helipad or runway, then take off. The vehicle can also perform an energy-efficient short takeoff from the runway using the in-wheel motors and thrust from the props.

ASKA™ A5 makes the maximum use of existing infrastructure, such as parking, charging stations, airfields, helipads and runways, for a seamless integration into city and suburban landscapes. The vehicle fits in standard parking spaces, it can be charged at EV charging stations, and the range extender engine runs on premium gasoline purchased at existing automotive gas stations.

Pre-order reservations launched in 2021 and the company has already secured $50M in pre-orders.

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