Israel's 'Flying Car' Is Nearing Operation, Completes Its First Solo Flight (Video)

First Posted: Jan 06, 2017 03:20 AM EST

Israel's "flying car" known as Cormorant drone has just completed an automated first solo flight over uneven terrain in November 2016. Urban Aeronautics, an Israeli aeronautics firm that built the drone, reports that the drone could carry a 500-kg load with a distance of 30 miles and speeds up to 185 km/h at altitudes up to 18,000 feet.

The Cormorant drone, which is previously known as Air Mule, has been developed for 15 years. It is approximately the size of a car. It will be used for search and rescue missions in calamities or on the battlefield. This is suitable for places in which the helicopters and planes cannot fly.

The drone has internal rotors and duct fans that are the shield to prevent from being damaged. These also allow the drone to take off and land vertically and to go in different directions. It is designed to fly between buildings or under power lines or in areas that are contaminated with chemicals or radiation, according to Techxplore.

Rafi Yoeli, the CEO and founder of Urban Aeronautics, said that just imagine a dirty bomb in a city and chemical substance of something else and this vehicle can come in robotically, remotely piloted, come into a street and decontaminate an area. He further said that it is safer than a helicopter as it can fly in between buildings and below power lines without the risk of blade strikes.

Meanwhile, Tal Inbar, the head of the UAV research center at Israel's Fisher Institute for Air and Space Strategic Studies, said that it could revolutionize several aspects of warfare, including the medical evacuation of soldiers on the battlefield. This drone could possibly save lives.

The Cormorant drone might be available in the market by 2020. As of now, it has been in a process in meeting the standards of the Federal Aviation Administration, according to Reuters.

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