'Air Taxis' - is this likely?

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'Air Taxis' - is this likely?

#1 Post by FD2 » Mon Sep 10, 2018 5:30 am

This British company claims 'air taxis' will be picking up passengers within four years:

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2018/0 ... thin-four/

Does anyone think this is likely or even feasible? :-bd or :-q

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Re: 'Air Taxis' - is this likely?

#2 Post by FD2 » Mon Sep 10, 2018 5:41 am

Alison:
in my haste I made a boob and should have put this in the non-airline section - is it possible to move it over?

Here is the machine, or prototype of the machine which might do it:
We're off to the pub!.png
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Re: 'Air Taxis' - is this likely?

#3 Post by Capetonian » Mon Sep 10, 2018 6:52 am

The technology has a long way to go before it's of practical use :

"It is currently capable of a five minute flight time at a top speed of 80kmph", which limits it to about a 6 km range.

As with most battery propelled transport, the storage of electricity is the Achilles' Heel, and on an aircraft the weight and longevity of the power supply are even more critical than for land based transport. The technology for storage is improving all the time and no doubt this will become a reality.

The 'magic bullet' would probably be supplying the power via some kind of magnetic induction or radio waves. Once that is solved, there will be the 'Nimby' problem to overcome.
One thing you can say for the French, when civilization falls they have less far to fall than everyone else.

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Re: 'Air Taxis' - is this likely?

#4 Post by Undried Plum » Mon Sep 10, 2018 7:00 am

What is new about air taxis? My first civi job was flying Aztecs for Edinburgh Air Taxis in the early 1970s. We occasionally used a Bell 47 too, though that was borderline legal at best.

What can this thing do that can't be done by a helicopter?

An endurance of five minutes at 43 knots needs a bit of work before it can be put on a Public Transport AOC. :-B

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Re: 'Air Taxis' - is this likely?

#5 Post by FD2 » Mon Sep 10, 2018 10:07 am

Thanks guys - looks like 4 years is maybe a tad optimistic then. :-?

It reminds me of the stuff you read in comics and the less serious newspapers every so often, from way back years ago. Arthur C. Clarke was way out with '2001' etc and maybe these guys are too!

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Re: 'Air Taxis' - is this likely?

#6 Post by Cacophonix » Mon Sep 10, 2018 12:12 pm

There is a good synopsis of three serious but still highly speculative autonomous air taxi programmes here.

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/ ... ate-lilium

Uber have put together a good synopsis of their approach here.

https://www.uber.com/elevate.pdf

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Re: 'Air Taxis' - is this likely?

#7 Post by Cacophonix » Mon Sep 10, 2018 12:14 pm

This article outlines why Uber's approach is probably a delusional fantasy.

http://www.thedrive.com/tech/20988/uber ... al-fantasy

I suspect that the author Mr Adams is probably right. In his conclusion but would be delighted to be wrong.

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Re: 'Air Taxis' - is this likely?

#8 Post by Cacophonix » Mon Sep 10, 2018 12:21 pm

The idea of even conventional piloted "bleeding edge" air taxi's is littered with failures, some tragic... Like this one.




https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldn ... -taxi.html




One can literally hear why this idea would have been a failure even before the prototype crashed. Atrociously noisy and the reason why the Rotodyne failed as a concept.


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Re: 'Air Taxis' - is this likely?

#9 Post by Undried Plum » Mon Sep 10, 2018 1:49 pm

Ehang claims the craft is robust enough to withstand thunderstorms and typhoons

Oh sh1t! :-ss

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