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Uber Flying Taxis to Be Researched in Paris

When you set out to revolutionize urban mobility, you need a lot of inspiration. When that revolution takes the shape of a flying taxi, you also need a city pretty much void of high-rises, so engineers can daydream while looking up at potential airborne highways. Only a few cities meet both these criteria.
Uber means business when it comes to flying taxis 1 photo
Uber is currently working on the Elevate project, the birth of the world’s first publicly available fleet of flying taxis. To show that it means business, yet again, the company announced the creation of a new research center in Paris.

Uber will be spending some 20 million euros on the new center ($23.5 million) where it will be working on the algorithms that would make the taxis fly, as well as on the air traffic control.

“Building the future of our cities will require the best and brightest minds working together,” a statement from Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi reads.

“With world-class engineers and a leading role in global aviation, France is the perfect place to advance our Uber Elevate program and new technology initiatives. We’re excited to partner with École Polytechnique to shape the future of urban mobility, on the ground and in the air.”

For the Elevate project, Uber earlier this month tapped NASA to run airspace management computer modeling and simulation and to assess the impacts of small aircraft in crowded areas. 

NASA will use Uber’s plans for implementing an urban aviation rideshare network to simulate its impact over the streets of Dallas Fort Worth. As the test progresses, the agency will be able to make safety recommendations.

The concept of the flying taxi, presented by Uber in the first week of May, is equipped with high-mounted wings and a series of small helicopter-like rotors. It’s not clear yet whether Uber plans to sell the taxis or rather rent them to those willing to pilot one for a living.


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