Flying taxis in ten years

Bosch technology designed for flying taxis


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The Jetsons, a popular cartoon produced by Hanna Barbera, may have been ahead of its time in predicting flying cars. Photo: Flickr.

The Jetsons, a popular cartoon produced by Hanna Barbera, may have been ahead of its time in predicting flying cars. Photo: Flickr.

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Bosch have designed technology for use in flying taxis

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Long commutes on dirt roads may be a thing of the past with the punters predicting the flying car is only a few years away

Once confined to the cartoon world of the Jetson's, a new report by the Boston Consulting Group has forecast the worlds population will have taken a billion flights in autonomous air taxis by 2030.

Bosch automotive and electrics president Harald Krger said Bosch is currently working on the state of the art sensor technology which will enable the technology.

"The first flying taxis are set to take off in major cities starting in 2023, at the latest. Bosch plans to play a leading role in shaping this future market," he said.

Mr Krger said conventional aerospace technology is too expensive, bulky, and heavy to be used in autonomous flying taxis. However, modern sensors that are also used for automated driving or in the ESP anti-skid system could have the potential to bridge this gap.

Bosch head of technology, Marcus Parentis said the Bosch universal control unit featured sensors currently used in the automotive industry that accurately measured acceleration and yaw-rate, but cost a fraction of the current sensor systems used in the aerospace sector.

"Through our Bosch solution, we aim to make civil aviation with flying taxis affordable for a wide range of providers," he said.

Mr Parentis said the sensors were particularly small and light weight which would further reduce the cost to market.

"We are talking to air taxi manufacturers from the aerospace and automotive industries, as well as with start-ups that build air vehicles and are looking to provide sharing services," he said.

"The question isn't whether flying taxis will become reality, but when."

Test flights of the flying taxis are scheduled to begin in cities such as Dubai, Los Angeles, Dallas, and Singapore as early as next year and while the initial target market is for use in congested large cities, Mr Parentis said the range of the taxis will be suitable for longer trips.

"Compared to today's means of transportation, flying taxis save time on trips of 10 kilometers or more, with a maximum range of up to 300 kilometers," he said.

Mr Parentis said at this stage a flying taxi is likely to cost about $500,000 euros.

"That's where our sensor box comes in. Through our Bosch solution, we aim to make civil aviation with flying taxis affordable for a wide range of providers," he said.

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