Aircraft

EHang flies into Spain to build air taxi test infrastructure

EHang flies into Spain to buil...
Air taxis like this Ehang 216 could soon be flying over the skies of Seville, Spain
Air taxis like this Ehang 216 could soon be flying over the skies of Seville, Spain
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The Mayor of Seville and EHang's CEO sign an agreement to develop an Urban Air Mobility pilot platform
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The Mayor of Seville and EHang's CEO sign an agreement to develop an Urban Air Mobility pilot platform
Air taxis like this Ehang 216 could soon be flying over the skies of Seville, Spain
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Air taxis like this Ehang 216 could soon be flying over the skies of Seville, Spain

Back in January, China's EHang aced the first flight in the US of its two-seat autonomous air taxi. Now the company has agreed to develop the first Urban Air Mobility pilot program in Seville, Spain.

According to a report by the European Commission, over half of the people of Europe live in urban sprawls comprising more than 10,000 inhabitants. These people share the same mobility infrastructure, facing the daily stresses of increased traffic congestion, traffic accidents and air pollution. EHang sees its air taxis as a means of getting people from A to B in a relatively efficient and eco-friendly manner, while also offering potential for tourist applications.

The cooperation agreement with the city of Seville follows the granting of an operational flight permit by the Civil Aviation Authority of Norway earlier in the month for long term testing of the EHang 216. This latest agreement will see EHang build passenger transportation, air logistics and command and control platforms in the municipality of Seville.

City officials will also work with the company to secure flight permits for test flights and route planning.

The Mayor of Seville and EHang's CEO sign an agreement to develop an Urban Air Mobility pilot platform
The Mayor of Seville and EHang's CEO sign an agreement to develop an Urban Air Mobility pilot platform

"Seville has developed a rich culture over its 2,000 years of history, so we are delighted to collaborate with the Seville government to bring new Urban Air Mobility technology to this ancient city," said EHang's founder, chairman and CEO Hu Huazhi. "There are many old, narrow paths in the old town of Seville, which are inaccessible to automobiles. We believe our Autonomous Aerial Vehicle can be a great solution for the city to relieve traffic congestion and better preserve historic sectors. Furthermore, as a popular tourist city, we hope to open up flying routes for sightseeing so that visitors from around the world can experience the spectacular cityscape of Seville by air."

EHang has two autonomous, electric air taxis in development, the single-seat 116 and the two-seat 216. Each sports 16 independent rotors mounted in pairs on eight arms that surround the passenger cabin. Both can reach a top speed of 130 km/h (80 mph), but will cruise at around 100 km/h. Flight time for the EHang 216 is 21 minutes, a few minutes more than the 116.

EHang has also agreed to use its drones for an aerial light show in celebration of the 500th anniversary of Ferdinand Magellan's voyage around the world, which set off from Seville in 1519.

Source: EHang

5 comments
guzmanchinky
Part of me is excited for this, part of me dreads the potential added noise...
paul314
Urban sprawl is now anything more than 10,000 people. Who knew.
Towerman
Outstanding ! Congratulations E-hang And the City of Seville !

Forward thinkers indeed. THIS along with Volo's efforts will get the revolution going and is exactly the news we need to here more often !

Noise is not of concern, superbikes, supercars and various other vehicles produce a much louder sound.

Now... when can I book m y first flight in Seville ?
Tord Eriksson
What happens if this vehicle collides with a big bird, are the rotors crash tested like aircraft?! How does it avoid steeples and antennas, say when flying on a foggy morning?! I love electric vehicles, have tinkered a lot with airborne ones, but I also know they are far from foolproof, including having an inclination to catch fire when their batteries get damaged or overheated.

And noise will definitely be an issue, not least during landing and take-off!
mediabeing
I wonder if there's a wager going on regarding how soon EHang will wake up and recognize that the props either need to be moved, or protected with very tough cowling/ducting.

The design as is, only has to have one prop blade get loose and go through the cabin space to mess it all up.
I keep waiting for EHang to wake up. Will it?