The Chinese drone maker unveiled a high-flying 500 lb. drone, which in theory would also be able to serve as an autonomous transportation vehicle for real humans — at CES on Wednesday. The Ehang 184 is a giant but elegantly designed drone; according to the company, it can transport one person at approximately 100 kilometers (62 miles) per hour on a roughly 23-minute trip. It can hold about 100 kg (220 lbs).
An app plans your trip; simply select your destination and get in, and the drone takes off. A fail safe system will protect the consumer, and if any of the systems fail, the drone will either go into hover mode or find a safe landing spot.
The all-electric drone has four arms, eight propellors, eight motors and two sets of sensors — as well as a redundancy to ensure safety in bad weather (or perhaps in case one set of sensors fails). Its website says that although the device is thunderstorm-proof, the command center will prohibit the vehicle from takeoff during extreme weather conditions.