The European aerospace company Airbus has started the first tests of a new type of transport – an unmanned aerial vehicle, reports The Verge. At the moment, the vehicle prototype is known as the Vahana project. Single unit has rotary screws, which provide the possibility of vertical take-off and landing. Thanks to this, the car will be able to pick up the passenger even in hard-to-reach places of the city. Use a new mode of transport is planned as a taxi.
During the tests, the flying car could climb to a height of 5 m and then descend to the ground. In total, the flight lasted 53 seconds. Tests were held in a testing center in Pendleton, Oregon. Ready-to-use serial version will be available by 2020.
To call an unmanned flying taxi a special application will be developed. After landing, the system will conduct a vehicle safety check. After that, the car will make a route taking into account the situation in the sky. The company believes that a new taxi will help solve the problem of traffic jams in megacities.
Another project of Airbus is called CityAirbus. A fully autonomous vehicle will be equipped with large propellers, which will operate from electric motors. Unlike Vahana, CityAirbus will be able to transport a group of passengers.
At the moment the development of flying taxis is conducted by several companies from around the world. Uber plans to introduce such a vehicle in 2020 – the premiere of the car should take place at the World Expo 2020 in Dubai. The flying car will be equipped with an autonomous piloting system. Drive such a vehicle will be an electric motor.