Personal Flying Vehicles are drones wherein the passenger taps-in the destination and straps himself in while the autonomous drone figures out the path to take to reach the destination using a 4G network.
The one seat human sized quadcopter that whipped CES 2016 into a frenzy could soon be used to ferry passengers this summer. The head of Dubai’s Roads and Transportation Agency has disclosed at the World Government summit today that the Chinese EHang 184 passenger drone will be deployed for “regular operations” from July of 2017.
As pointed out by the Associated Press, the EHang 184 is already zipping around Dubai’s Burj Al-Arab skyscraper, which has a helipad situated at 689 feet from the ground.
“This is not only a model,” said Mattar al-Tayer, chief of Dubai’s Roads and Transportation. “We have actually experimented with this vehicle flying in Dubai’s skies.”
As yet it is unclear whether the Personal Flying Vehicle has actually carried a real person, especially since al-Tayer has not elaborated any further. However, it would appear that the flying vehicle has received some performance upgrades since its debut on the Las Vegas floor.
The Associated Press has reported that the Personal Flying Vehicle has a range of 31 miles which can roughly be translated to half an hour of flight time. However, its loading carrying capacity is limited to just 260.
Since the PFV is an autonomous drone, the passenger needs to only punch in the destination and strap himself before take-off. From there, the PFV will naviguate itself using a 4G network.
Although the UAE will claim the bragging rights for the world’s first city to feature flying passenger drones, back home officials in Nevada have also sought the FAA’s clearance for the EHang 184.
So chances are that you might see the EHang zipping around sooner rather than later.