GiGadgets | GiGadgets | Ehang made first man-carrying drone flight

Ehang made first man-carrying drone flight
Autonomous flight is getting increasingly real
Jane Wise
By Jane Wise
Feb 09, 2018
7260

   

Ehang, best known for its Ghost Drone Quadcopter, appeared in CES 2016 with the promise to build a completely autonomous drone to carry man and cargo. The promise was fulfilled recently, as Ehang 184, the quadcopter passenger completed its first man-carrying flight in Lianyungang, China.

 

Some 40 passengers, including Ehang's founder and CEO, deputy mayor of Guangzhou City, and other officials, made appearance in the video showing the flight. These passengers simply input their destinations on a large touchpad running on Google Map inside the vehicle and the autonomous flying followed with a serene background and a killer view.

 

The Ehang 184 model can carry one passenger of 100kg or less for a 23-minute cruising in the air. The drone is said to be able to reach a speed of 100km/h and withstand through low visibility and force 7 typhoon. In the test flight, the vehicle was flying at 130 km/h for 8.8 km.  Another important feature is the model's fail-safe system, which will land the passenger and drone safely down to nearest viable area once the drone experiences malfunction or disconnection.

 

What's next? Ehang's CEO confirmed the company will strive for a two-passenger vehicle that can lift up a total of 670 pounds. But there is no word on when this drone will be commercially available. The drone costs about $200,000 to $300,000 to produce, according to Ehang's website.

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