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Would you get in one of these?

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Would you get in one of these?

Old 18th Feb 2017, 09:57
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Would you get in one of these?

The Chinese company EHang believe they gave created a practical person carrying drone.



Here is quick intro. . So given that this thing will soon be flying, would you get in it? It would be interesting to hear your responses, either way.

Now if our past in an indication for the future holds and these things are successful then we can expect bigger, faster versions with more payload and greater range. Then will you get in one?

This could be the future transport for the weathy.


ps. My own thoughts will be posted later.

Last edited by Piltdown Man; 18th Feb 2017 at 19:56. Reason: Bad link and no picture. Sorry.
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Old 18th Feb 2017, 10:41
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After you, ...
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Old 18th Feb 2017, 11:22
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This sort of device was being promised in the 1960s. Whilst they may have got the flying technology right at last - they haven't sorted out the ATC problem. If you think humans are not so good with cars - best to stand on the pavement and be ready to jump out of the way when two of these have a prang at 500ft.
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Old 18th Feb 2017, 12:08
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I used to have a telecoms colleague who was a rigger, worked on sometimes very high masts and towers, arent you scared ever at that height people always asked him and he answered -'anything over twenty feet and you are dead anyway.

So as I assume these things will fly at considerable more than twenty feet above ground then they are inherently dangerous and non fail safe even if they are not up the flight levels.

The dilemma is are they safer now with no conflicting traffic or is it best to wait five years until the bugs are cleaned up but then there may be lots of others out there to collide with
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Old 18th Feb 2017, 12:46
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The vision shared with us then youngsters on TV via the Jetsons, Blue Peter and Tomorrows World is here at last. John Noakes would have had a go.

However, think I'll continue to take Uber and sit out the traffic jam.
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Old 18th Feb 2017, 13:58
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If they do start up it'll be in the sandpit by the sound of it and we'll be waiting for decades to see how well they work before the CAA allow them here. By then they'll either be long forgotten or safe. Either way I'm happy for them to take the chance at a healthy distance.
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Old 18th Feb 2017, 19:50
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Not such a positive response then. But I'm not surprised. Personally, I think the first 100,000 passengers should look like one of these.



What worries me is that the these things might be accepted because of media pressure, from all quarters. But I'll only get in one once certain things have been put in place. To start with I'd like to see as proper maintenance procedures, repair programmes and qualified engineers in place to look after the physical device. I'd also like be convinced that it will fly through windshear, turbulence, will miss-unexpected obstacles in its path, will divert if necessary, will have battery assurance programme, will deal with engine and prop failures and so on an so forth. I'm not convinced this has been done.

But I predict the first victims will sliced to bits by the props...
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Old 18th Feb 2017, 23:44
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Not ignoring the fact that it could be the ruination of a wonderful stroke along the Creek!
One of these on your head.....
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Old 19th Feb 2017, 02:00
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With a cruising speed of 60kmh, eHang has kind of missed the point of taking to the air for faster transport.
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Old 19th Feb 2017, 08:24
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Yeah, I'd get in it.


If it was the only way out of a combat zone or similar.
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Old 19th Feb 2017, 08:34
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Who's doing the walk-round checks?
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Old 19th Feb 2017, 12:31
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If they do start up it'll be in the sandpit by the sound of it
RTA Dubai say they will have a personal drone in service this summer !!!!! (Not sure if it's the same model)

http://whatson.ae/dubai/2017/02/pass...dubai-by-july/
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Old 19th Feb 2017, 18:04
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Definitely to be used going around the M25!
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Old 19th Feb 2017, 18:55
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Could be used to replace the 'GatLink' chopper service between LHR + LGW.
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Old 19th Feb 2017, 19:56
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On the ground, those rotors are likely to be pretty dangerous. You can't just plonk it down if people are about. And if you can't just plonk it down when you want to stop off at the shops, it's going to be pretty pointless.
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Old 20th Feb 2017, 12:32
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I wouldn't get into one. What happens if one or more of the motors quit ? Can the thing autorotate ?
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Old 22nd Feb 2017, 17:18
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I'll guess with one rotor/motor failed per arm you would land safely. With two failed on one arm you would lose 50% of your lift and the outcome would be more interesting, I'm sure. I'm also convinced auto-rotation is not possible as the propellers are fixed pitch.

Last edited by Piltdown Man; 22nd Feb 2017 at 21:59. Reason: As ever, spelling.
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Old 22nd Feb 2017, 17:49
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Personally, I think the first 100,000 passengers should look like one of these.
Reminds me of how Soviet airliners used to spend their initial service just flying mail and cargo on their proposed service routes, before being permitted to carry passengers. The Tu-134 spent 2,600 hours doing so, and the initial Tu-154s did so from May 1971 to Feb 1972. No time for that kind of caution in the West, money won't make itself!
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Old 24th Mar 2017, 14:12
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The concept of the “fan at each corner” flying car has cropped up repeatedly every few years since the 1950s. Typical designs involved belt drive from a single engine such that the loss of a single belt, let alone the engine would have been fatal!
The two things that have changed over the last decade that make the whole prospect more realistic are: Light weight high capacity batteries able to drive independently controlled electric motors; Enough portable computing power to provide computer controlled stability.
This latest concept is, I believe, able to handle the loss of two rotors even if they are on the same arm. That is interesting because I assume it means not only that the four rotors on two opposite arms are able to support the total weight, but also that the rotors on the third ‘good’ arm are able to rapidly switch between forward and reverse to offer the necessary balancing.
I think Piltdown Man does a good job of listing the other issues important issues though…
I'd also like be convinced that it will fly through windshear, turbulence, will miss-unexpected obstacles in its path, will divert if necessary, will have battery assurance programme, …
For me, 10 000 hours of operation without death or serious injury will the minimum for considering a flight in one.
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Old 25th Mar 2017, 14:01
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Well, a quick peek at the website in the OP shows that it's got eight props and eight motors, so it should be able to overcome a single motor failure.

But if the artist's rendition is accurate, I'm not sure I'd like sitting over that many LiIon batteries.

And one statement bothers me:

If any components malfunction or disconnect, the aircraft will immediately land in the nearest possible area to ensure safety.
"Safely" and "nearest possible area" could be conflicting, depending on how smart the thing is. In an urban setting, "safely" for it might not equate to "safely" for folks on the ground.

As far as would I get into it, sure. Would I stay in if it made noises like it was going to spool up and take off?

Prolly not, at least not right away.
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