The Ehang 184 Autonomous Aerial Automobile (AAV) weighs 200 kilograms (440lbs), and has 4 units of paired electrical motors. The corporate claims the batteries will be charged in two to 4 hours. The drone is managed by way of a pill, which is used to set the flight path earlier than take-off. In accordance with the corporate’s web site: “Ehang 184 AAV flies in a inverted U form. It takes off and lands vertically, level to level direct flight based mostly on altitude and latitude of the origin and termination level. Take Off/Touchdown factors are touchdown targets pre-set with Ehang Brand. The touchdown digicam will place the touchdown targets mechanically and precisely.”
For the reason that passenger has zero inflight management over the machine, security is of course a significant concern. The corporate claims: “Even with one propeller malfunctions, it could nonetheless land within the nearest potential space safely.” As well as, if another elements malfunction or disconnect, “the plane will instantly land within the nearest potential space to make sure security.”
In accordance with The Guardian, the corporate additionally says it’s planning to arrange a distant management centre that may take over the car if there have been an issue. In checks, the car has been flown greater than 100 occasions at low altitudes in a forested space in Guangzhou, the place Ehang relies, together with a number of occasions with an individual on board.
Ehang was based in 2014, and has raised over $50 million (£34 million) in capital from numerous traders. It’s best identified for its Ghostdrone product. The Ehang 184 represents an bold extension of its actions past these smaller, conventional drones.
At a time when authorities around the globe are clamping down on the usage of unmanned drones, it’s not clear how one which carries passengers will likely be acquired. Not like for autonomous automobiles, that are gaining wider acceptance, the margin for error with autonomous flying autos is quite small. Neither is it apparent who would possibly wish to purchase and use such a passenger drone.