Boeing’s Autonomous Flying Car Makes Maiden Voyage For 60 Seconds

Being stuck in traffic when you’re in a huge rush to get somewhere in the city could soon be a thing of the past if Boeing gets to have their say with regards to the future of urban transportation.

Their autonomous passenger air vehicle (PAV) prototype completed a controlled takeoff, hover and landing during its inaugural flight test. It wasn’t a traditional flight, as it only lasted a minute, hovering above the runway, but it marked a milestone in the PAV’s development.

Future flights will focus on forward and wing-bone flight, as well as the transition between vertical and forward flight modes.

“In one year, we have progressed from a conceptual design to a flying prototype,” stated Boeing CTO, Greg Hyslop. “Boeing’s expertise and innovation have been critical in developing aviation as the world’s safest and most efficient form of transportation, and we will continue to lead with a safe, innovative and responsible approach to new mobility solutions.”

The PAV prototype is powered by an electric propulsion system and has a range of up to 50 miles (80.47 km). It measures 30 feet (9.14 meters) long and 28 feet (8.53 meters) wide, and was designed in a way in which to achieve efficient hover and forward flight.

“This is what revolution looks like, and it’s because of autonomy. Certifiable autonomy is going to make quiet, clean and safe urban air mobility possible,” said Aurora Flight Sciences president and CEO, John Langford.

Aside from the PAV, Boeing NeXt, charged with leading the company’s urban air mobility efforts, also developed an unmanned electric cargo air vehicle (CAV), designed to transport up to 500 lbs (226.8 kg). The CAV completed its first indoor test flight last year and will proceed outdoors sometime this year.

 

  • salamOOn

    “Flying Car”

    where is the car?

  • Mind Synthetic

    so its an airplane with a quad and some skis bolted to the bottom? what was wrong with helicopters?

    • Well, helicopters are very complex machines that are prone to catastrophic failures, high crash rates, very low survivability and high operating costs. There’s that.

      • Mind Synthetic

        i dont see how their solution is safer, if anything looks highly unstable in its current form. quad copter isn’t a solution, nor is it a car. LA has choppers flying all over all the time, no crashes for quiet some time.

        • Helicopters are just not practical. Once these drone taxis ramp up, it will cost $50 per ride vs several times that for helicopters. Also, you have to about about pollution from helicopters. If what you’re saying is true, why haven’t we seen helicopter taxi services take off all over the country and world?

        • Mike anonymous

          I’m so glad your calling it a Quadcopter. Like; you’ve really made my day @Mind_Synthetic:disqus. Thank You.

  • LJ

    Flying cars is such a terrible idea. People can’t drive regular cars as it is.

    • Chances are these will be fully computer controlled and plugged into the Matrix via Skynet.

      • LJ

        So instead of Autopilot slamming me into a barrier at 60mph, it’ll be slamming me into the ground from 6,000 feet. Super.

        • Yeah, I seen how autopilot works, not very well. Life is full of risks.

          • Mike anonymous

            Life is full of risks”,.. Well It’s also full of surprises. … Like running out of battery or gas.

  • Jay

    Great now just have thousands of them in the sky. We’ll have the same problem we do if not worse once people have these.

    • Mike anonymous

      Like; your not getting rid of traffic… your just putting it in the sky.

      • Jay

        To me that’s much worse.

  • MatTa Ddor

    misunderstanding

    concept and meaning word *car*

    • Mike anonymous

      I think the misunderstanding is word ‘car’ for ‘plane’.

  • I am not making any judgments, but drone transportation is coming. Governments around the world have seen this as boon to their economies and environment. The question is how will this be regulated.

    • Mind Synthetic

      i respectfully disagree, its a gimmick that burns bright in tech industry’s eyes momentarily, will be abandoned once they hit a snag where they have to change a whole country’s infrastructure just to accommodate a large scale quad copters. i think it would be a money better spent if they actually took a look at how for instance japan made public transport work without killing automobile. its fast its pressie with no delays and on the clock. just saying, but hey, whatever

      • Say what you may, it’s coming. Governments and big business are behind it.

  • LeStori

    Flying car or Roadified Plane? Certainly not the first. This will be too the air that Road Snails (aka Caravans/Trailers) are too the road system.

    • Mike anonymous

      THAAAAANK YOU This is a miniaturized plane,.. that’s all. (if anything it’s a uniquely shaped QUADCOPTER (That’s right, I said it… not ‘drone‘…. QUADcopter. That’s what the official term for it is/should be.)). This is not a flaying car.

    • BOEING IS CALLING IT A PAV. THE EDITOR DIDN’T BOTHER TO READ THE ARTICLE.

  • THIS ISN’T A FLYING CAR. EVEN BOEING ISN’T CALLING IT ONE. MAYBE CAR EDITORS NEED TO STOP USING THE TERM SO CASUALLY.

  • Major Lee Gassole

    I wouldn’t exactly call it autonomous. They wanted it to lift off and land, so someone pre-programmed the “flight plan” at some point. Kinda like they did in 1979. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/0804c5aee256e4956d28fb3f4456b09bf1851935403a9cdfc796ffa3a0b3731a.jpg

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