At the beginning of 2019, Elon Musk issued a tweet: "The next generation of Roadster will be able to do this like this" with a vertical car movement. The crazy dreamer also announced that Tesla will build a flying car in 2022 - a large "real incense" scene.
With the "boring tunnel" out, the "blocking solution" has two remaining "competitors", self-driving cars and UAM, in other words, ground-based autopilot and PK in the air.
Both types of autonomous driving are challenging the current mode of transportation and subverting human travel habits.
In March 2018, Uber's self-driving car crashed into a cold water for the entire industry. In fact, more scholars are also skeptical about whether autonomous vehicles can alleviate traffic congestion.
The World Economic Forum published a research report on autonomous driving at the end of June 2018, stating that in the next decade, with the development of autonomous vehicles and various types of travel services, traffic congestion in urban centers will not decrease, but instead Intensified.
In 2019, a study published by Adam Millard-Ball, a professor at the University of California, Santa Cruz, in the Journal of Transportation Policy, put forward a point of view, autonomous cars driving people's hands and brains And without the need to drive skills, it will become a resting space, more people are more willing to choose to travel by car, the number of cars on the street may increase exponentially.
So what about automatic driving in the air? Its disadvantage is that the entire industry is still in the early stage of product development. However, some companies have already proposed related overall solutions.
Yihang intelligent command and dispatch system is running
Yi Hang said in an interview that "air taxis" are actually more like "air subways." "For the safety of ground personnel and passengers, the 'air taxi' must be flying according to the preset route, and must not fly. So now we connect all the aircraft into the mobile communication network and use a command and dispatch system to carry them on. Cluster control. Much like the tower that now directs passenger airliners, it can complete route planning, multiple aircraft dispatch management, and achieve automatic driving." According to relevant sources of Yihang Airlines, many "flight taxis" landing and landing sites will be set up in the future. Find the nearest station on your mobile app and book a "flying".
Yihang 216 self-driving aircraft manned flying over Guangzhou city
At present, Yihang Airlines has reached a strategic cooperation with Guangzhou City, and both parties hope to jointly build the world's first UAM pilot city. In addition, another "flight taxi" startup Volocopter is working with Singapore. It is reported that the two sides are building a "flight taxi" landing platform.
The “flying taxis” of the two companies all adopt vertical take-off and landing design, which greatly reduces the footprint of the landing and landing platform, and the construction cost is relatively low. It can make full use of the top platform of the high-rise buildings in the city.
If infrastructure costs such as landing platforms and roads, viaducts, etc. are included, the cost of airborne autonomous driving may be lower than that of ground-based autonomous driving. At the same time, the automatic driving in the air is faster and more efficient. In addition, the 3D space in the air is wider and more flexible than the 2D plane on the ground, and there is almost no traffic congestion.
The market seems to be more optimistic about UAM. Before the G7 summit this year, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced the establishment of a special support fund of 300 million pounds (2.6 billion yuan), focusing on the development of electric vertical take-off and landing aircraft (eVTOL) and logistics drones and urban air Traffic application. NASA also launched a number of eVTOL R&D projects. In May 2018, it signed an agreement with Uber to achieve "air taxis" within five years. Morgan Stanley released a research report saying that by 2040, the UAM market will reach 1.5 trillion US dollars.