SAN FRANCISCO- NASA and Uber have signed an agreement to explore putting flying taxis in the skies over US cities.
NASA said on Tuesday, 8 May, that it will begin simulations for so-called “urban air mobility” vehicles that also include delivery drones.
The announcement between the two comes after Uber Elevate summit in Los Angeles that brings tech and transportation leaders to have a discussion on the future of urban aviation.
Nasa said they working with Uber because their goal is to create a rideshare network that will allow residents to use a small aircraft the same way Uber users can now use an app to call a car.
Nasa said simulations are planned in its research facility at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport.
According to the AFP report other companies long with Uber are trying to develop similar kinds of aerial devices.
Your ride in the sky could be arriving as soon as 2020—see what it'll be like to rise above it all with UberAIR.
— Uber (@Uber) May 8, 2018
.@Uber's chief product officer, Jeff Holden, said the autonomous flying taxi program is meant to be "community friendly." He says they're still in the design phase and explained the technology works similar to a helicopter.
— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) May 8, 2018
Uber Aviation product chief Nikhil Goel, “Our goal is to radically improve global mobility,” the all-electric flyer can achieve speeds over 300 kilometers an hour with a range of 100 kilometers on a battery charge.
He continued, “We fly a lot so we can prove to the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) and the public that these aircraft are safe.”
Uber’s concept for a flying taxi 🤯 pic.twitter.com/yBoT6dcHpk
— TechSmartt (@TechSmartt) May 8, 2018
Eric Allison, head of Uber’s Aviation programmes, told AFP the flying vehicles are part of an overall strategy for them to allowing people to stop using personal cars.
Allison said, “The rational choice for transportation will be less and less to own and drive a car,”
He added, “We want to price it so low, it’ll be irrational to drive your car.”