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Uber to Detail its Flying Car Concept This Week

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【Summary】Uber is detailing a flying car concept at its Uber Elevate Summit in taking place in Dallas, Texas on April 25 - 27th, 2017. The Summit will offer an information-packed three days during which Uber hopes to build awareness about the Elevate mission, identify and accelerate opportunities, and define a path towards towards future flying cars.

Eric Walz    Apr 24, 2017 12:58 PM PT
Uber to Detail its Flying Car Concept This Week

Uber is detailing a flying car concept at its Uber Elevate Summit in taking place in Dallas, Texas on April 25 - 27th, 2017. According to Uber, the Summit will offer an information-packed three days during which it hopes to build awareness about the Elevate Mission, identify and accelerate opportunities to collaborate within the community, detail Uber's role in the ecosystem, and define a path towards initial urban VTOL (vertical take-off and landing) vehicles.

Leaders from vehicle manufacturing, regulatory bodies, venture capital, and aviation technology are expected to attend, and will share research and plans for a path forward. Imagine traveling from San Francisco's Marina district to work in downtown San Jose, California a drive that normally takes about two hours, in only 15 minutes.

According to Uber, last year, the average San Francisco resident spent 230 hours commuting between work and home. In Los Angeles, California and Sydney, Australia residents spend seven working weeks each year commuting, two of which are wasted unproductively while totally stopped, stuck in gridlock. For all of us, that's less time with family, less time at work growing our economies, more money spent on fuel, and an increase in our stress levels. On-demand aviation, has the potential to radically improve urban mobility, giving people back time lost in their daily commutes. With the company's driver partner data, Uber is aware of the traffic problems that that citizens in cities around the world experience. Uber views helping to solve this problem as core to their mission.

Flying Cars

Uber hopes to deploy a network of small, electric aircraft that take off and land vertically, known as "VTOL", aircraft for vertical take-off and landing, (pronounced vee-tol). This will enable rapid, reliable transportation between suburbs, cities and ultimately, from place to place within busy cities.

The development of infrastructure to support an urban VTOL network will likely have significant cost advantages over heavy-infrastructure approaches such as roads, rail, bridges and tunnels. It has been proposed that the repurposed tops of parking garages, existing helipads, and even unused land surrounding highway interchanges could form the basis of an extensive, distributed network of "vertiports" (VTOL hubs with multiple takeoff and landing pads and charging stations) or single-aircraft "vertistops" (a single VTOL pad with minimal infrastructure).

As costs for traditional infrastructure options continue to increase, the lower cost and increased flexibility provided by these new approaches may provide compelling options for cities and states around the world. Furthermore, VTOLs do not need to follow fixed routes. Trains, buses, and cars all funnel people from point A to B along a limited number of dedicated routes, exposing travelers to serious delays in the event of a single interruption. VTOLs, by contrast, can travel toward their destination independently of any specific path, making route-based congestion less prevalent.

Ultimately, if small electric aircraft can serve the on-demand urban transit while providing quiet, fast, clean, efficient, and safe commuting options, there may be a path to high-volume manufacturing. This may enable VTOLs to achieve a dramatically lower per-vehicle cost. The economics of manufacturing VTOLs will become more akin to automobiles than aircraft.

resource from: Uber.com

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