Gone are the days when flying cars were limited to Jetsons or a sci-fi movie. Parallel efforts from multiple techno enthusiasts have taken flying cars closer to reality. From Google’s Larry Page to Uber several names are coming forward to make it happen.
Let’s take a look at what we have so far:
Kitty Hawk Flyer
This flyer is designed by the aeronautics firm ‘The Kitty Hawk Corporation’ and the firm is backed by Google’s Larry Page. The recently released video shows the prototype of this electric aircraft flying over water. For now, it looks more like a leisure vehicle than a flying car and can only be flown in USA in uncongested areas above fresh water. One doesn’t need a pilot’s license for this and you’ll learn to fly it within minutes. It will be available for purchase by the end of 2017. You can visit their website to become a member for 100$ and obtain a discount of 2000$ on the retail price and also avail other benefits.
Founded in 2010 by Google’s co-founder Larry Page, Zee. Aero has filled several registrations with FAA. Their website contains this quote “We’re designing, building and testing better ways to get from A to B”. It is a flying car based on VTOL that is being developed to carry passengers from source to destination. According to a report by the businessinsider, Kitty Hawk is a smaller subsidiary of Zee. Aero.
Airbus made an entry into the Vertical Takeoff and Landing market by revealing what they call ‘Project Vahana’. It is inspired by the helicopter and the rotors sit on each of the two wings both back and front.
Another ambitious concept is that of Popup which is a drone-car hybrid. The vehicle consists of a detachable car placed on wheels for travelling by land and a set of 8 rotor blades which can pickup the car when it is time to fly. This provides flexibility for travel.
Uber plans to take transportation to the next level by launching flying cars by 2020 in Dallas and Dubai. Instead of manufacturing flying cars, Uber has got the ball rolling through Uber’s Elevate program where it announced several partnerships. Uber dreams of a commute system comprising of flying cars which will fly passengers to their destination using vertical takeoff and landing capability.
In 2015 AeroMobil , a Slovakian company had announced that 2 seater flying car will hit the market by 2017. Recently the company unveiled the latest model of its flying car at a car show in Monaco. This vehicle might become available for commercial use sometime this year. Unlike KittyHawk Flyer, to fly Aeromobil you will require both a driving license and a pilot’s license.
Google’s co-founder Sergey Brin has been working on a massive airship at the Nasa Ames Research Centre, inside of Hangar 2. This airship is said to be large enough to occupy the entire hangar. According to experts unlike Kitty Hawk Flyer or Aeromobil, this airship could be more of a transportation system for cargo.
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