Drones

Dubai prepares for mid-year launch of Ehang's crazy taxi drone

The Ehang drone can be ordered via a smartphone application, and uses onboard navigation systems to carry passengers to their desired location
The Ehang drone can be ordered via a smartphone application, and uses onboard navigation systems to carry passengers to their desired location
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The Ehang drone can be ordered via a smartphone application
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The Ehang drone can be ordered via a smartphone application
The Chinese company has already signed an agreement with the State of Nevada to conduct flight testing
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The Chinese company has already signed an agreement with the State of Nevada to conduct flight testing
The RTA has revealed that it has already carried out a test run and has earmarked July 2017
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The RTA has revealed that it has already carried out a test run and has earmarked July 2017
The Ehang drone can be ordered via a smartphone application, and uses onboard navigation systems to carry passengers to their desired location
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The Ehang drone can be ordered via a smartphone application, and uses onboard navigation systems to carry passengers to their desired location
The Ehang drone can fly for 30 minutes at a time
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The Ehang drone can fly for 30 minutes at a time
The Chinese company has already signed an agreement with the State of Nevada to conduct flight testing
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The Chinese company has already signed an agreement with the State of Nevada to conduct flight testing
The Chinese company has already signed an agreement with the State of Nevada to conduct flight testing
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The Chinese company has already signed an agreement with the State of Nevada to conduct flight testing
The Ehang drone can be ordered via a smartphone application
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The Ehang drone can be ordered via a smartphone application
The Ehang drone can be ordered via a smartphone application, and uses onboard navigation systems to carry passengers to their desired location
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The Ehang drone can be ordered via a smartphone application, and uses onboard navigation systems to carry passengers to their desired location

With its jet-propelled firefighters, million-dollar drone races and plans for its very own Hyperloop, Dubai ain't a bad place to see advanced technologies in action. In the latest example of the city's early-adoption mindset, the local transport authority has revealed that it has been testing Ehang's personal taxi drone, with plans to launch real operations this July.

We first laid eyes on the Ehang 184 passenger drone at CES last year. As far as drones go, it's actually much less drone and more automated helicopter, using onboard navigation systems to carry passengers to their desired location without the need for a pilot. It can be ordered via a smartphone application, fly for 30 minutes at a time and take passengers as far as 40 to 50 km (25 to 31 mi) away with a payload capacity of up to 100 kg (220 lb).

This might all sound pretty out-there, but the Chinese company has already signed an agreement with the State of Nevada to conduct flight testing and also teamed up with a biotechnology firm to use its pilotless choppers to deliver artificial organs.

But it looks like both efforts might be beaten to the punch by the UAE, with Dubai's Roads and Transport Authority announcing the plans at the World Government Summit today. It revealed that it has already carried out a test run and has earmarked July 2017 as the launch date for full operations. If anyone seems capable of pulling it off ...

You can check out the RTA's promo video below.

Source: Government of Dubai (Facebook)

مركبة جوية ذاتية القيادة

8 comments
Bob Flint
Besides being shredded at the least sign of wind or glitch boarding or exiting, how is the AC system inside that solarium?
Milton
very cool. Would love to see this become a reality, but would not personally fly in it until at least 10,000 trips have been reported without incident. 1,000 trips if they provide me with my own parachute.
VincentWolf
The age of the Jetsons is near.
JimPike
Poor design! The propellers will be damaged by anything on the landing or takeoff surface and create a hazard for anyone nearby. Also they might even contact the ground in strong or gusty winds. They should be above the cabin.
Dan Lewis
I agree with the American competitor who has a similar designed vehicle - the rotors are too low, too close to the ground. The slightest mis-landing could take out one or more rotors. Unacceptable. Redesign is called for.
Lardo
No, no, no, no, no! And, as a pilot, I don't want to see one invading "my" airspace, either.
Crankie Fahrt
Max cargo capacity is 220lbs. Recent Data from Saudi Arabia shows that 80% of the population is considered "obese" and/or unhealthy overweight. So, that kind of restricts who could utilize this service. Also, agree that having rotors exposed to human contact and close to the ground is only a recipe for disaster. Get those rotors overhead! Overall - poor design, but the right attitude. Back to the drawing board, guys!
MD
There really is no point.. An electric (if you must) coaxial helicopter could provide all the benefits with reduced drawbacks... Efficiency, useful payload, safety, redundancy etc..
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