Residents of megacities lose many hours getting to work or home by sitting in rush hour traffic. Meetings are cancelled, precious time is wasted, and nerves are frayed all because of congested roads. Uber and...
Residents of megacities lose many hours getting to work or home by sitting in rush hour traffic. Meetings are cancelled, precious time is wasted, and nerves are frayed all because of congested roads.
Uber and NASA have joined forces to create a flying taxi. The space agency will help the company develop software for the project, which has been named Elevate.
Compact aircraft with vertical take-off and landing will allow the use of airspace and relieve the transport volume on the ground.
The authorities in Dubai, Greater Dallas, and Los Angeles have already agreed to participate in the project. The first flights are scheduled to begin by 2020.
The flying taxi service will be developed along the lines of Uber's ground operations. Flight routes will be calculated based on users' orders.
According to Uber, the infrastructure of Elevate will require much less investment than their road transport network. Most cities already have a huge number of sites suitable for taking off and landing an air taxi. Existing helicopter pads, roofs of high-rise buildings, and almost any unoccupied open space can be converted into landing areas of this new transport system.
Such a network will not need complicated infrastructure like bridges and tunnels. The main task of the developers will be to provide intelligent control of the system for safe flights and an optimal allocation of orders between pilots.
The new transport will follow the rules of conventional aviation. But special certification will be required as a result of the increase in traffic of "on-demand flights".
Uber planes will use electric power. The absence of emissions is extremely important when developing the airspace of a city. In addition, these electric motors will produce little noise.
Against the backdrop of negative news from London where the city authorities did not renew Uber's license due to violations of working conditions and other rules, the company is looking for ways of developing in the future. For example, they are working on an autopilot for conventional cars.
In a few years, flying taxis will become a common thing for city dwellers if Uber and NASA realize their plans. And there might not even be a pilot in the cockpit.
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