EHang 184 Passenger-carrying Drones May Start Operating in Dubai by July
The city of Dubai has announced plans to use EHang 184 passenger-carrying drones as an alternative form of transportation to ease traffic congestion. Mattar al-Tayer — head of Dubai’s Roads & Transportation Agency, said the drone would begin operations by July.
The EHang 184 has been a crowd-puller at trade shows around the world for the past one year. Though impressive in concept, some have cast doubt that it will ever take off as a form of transportation. The latest developments in Dubai seem to indicate that the EHang 184 will, after all, be put to real use. In fact, the EHang 184 first had its maiden flight over Dubai’s iconic Burj al-Arab hotel not too long ago as part of a series of initial tests to prove its reliability and safety.
The drone can carry a single passenger weighing up to 100kg and some light luggage. Flight is fully autonomous although each drone will be closely monitored by a control center on the ground via 4G wireless networks. Once seated, the passenger can select a destination to travel to and the drone will fly autonomously at a low altitude with speed of approximately 100kmh. The drones are expected to operate within an area of 40 to 50km.
Passenger-carrying drones are not the only form of alternative transportation methods that Dubai is looking at. The city has also signed a deal with Hyperloop One to develop a hyperloop line between Dubai and Abu Dhabi.