Drones may in fact be the future of human everyday travel. Imagine a world where one can simply step inside a chamber, input the destination, and the vehicle would simply lift off, flying you to the target area. On a previous article, we have talked about the amazing drone concept being developed in China. The Ehang 184 was unveiled at a Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Nevada last 2016, and the world has been at the edge of their seats waiting for the next step.
Although Ehang had mentioned the transport drone to be in development and testing, with over a thousand recorded test-flights, few have actually seen footage of the beast in action on the field. Dubai, for instance, has taken an interest in the transport drone’s potential, and have made a partnership with the company to further develop the drone’s capabilities.
This week Ehang released official footage of the flight testing for the transport drone. According to the newer data revealed, the 184 AAV (Autonomous Aerial Vehicle) can carry a single person in its chambers, and was able to carry the passenger up to 10 miles away. The electric-powered vehicle reached speeds up to 80 miles per hour on test flights. Passengers involved in the testing included high ranking company agents, as well as government officials throughout China.
Although still in the initial phases of development, the transport drone has shown a lot of promise. It is, however, highly unlikely to see these flying transports carrying passengers all over the world, but that may be the end goal of this endeavor. Ehang also mentioned upgrades to the drone, such as manual piloting as well as other upgraded passenger experiences.
Ehang is not alone in this transport drone venture, however. The Volocopter, another AAV that is funded by the Intel Corporation, can carry up to two passengers, while the Vahana, sponsored by Airbus, can travel at a farther distance before running out of fuel.
The race is on, however, and the future of public transportation may be in the very center of this competition.