ENABLING AIR MOBILITY IN URBAN ENVIRONMENTS
FROM THE MINUTES 2018
Boarding a helicopter downtown that takes you to the airport sounds appealing, doesn’t it? That’s Charles Telitsine’s idea of urban air mobility. Security is a significant challenge facing on-demand mobility — it’s a common occurrence for autonomous cars to make headlines when an accident occurs. This contributes to the lack of trust many people have in smart vehicles.
Even if commuter airlines are 6.7 times safer than cars, René Jr. Landry says that in order to convince the population to adopt these vehicles, it is necessary to tackle some complex considerations, such as:
→ Airspace capacity and efficiency
→ Community accessibility
→ Future consumer behaviors
→ Global climate considerations
→ National, regional and local economics
→ Societal and demographic shifts
UX AND URBAN AIR MOBILITY
For on-demand air mobility to be democratized, René says drones should be user-friendly. His research on automated vehicles focuses on ease of certification, affordability, safety, ease of use, efficiency, lifecycle and emissions.
He shares four recommendations from the NASA strategic framework for on-demand air mobility for a simplified vehicle operation and airspace integration:
1. Efficient on-demand routing and sequencing will have to be subject to highly augmented flight and trajectory control
2. Reliable automated systems detecting, sensing and avoiding accidents to reduce human intervention, but still allow it
3. NextGen airspace systems to accommodate more vehicles
4. Certifications for autonomous operations
DOWNTOWN? HOP IN FOR A FLIGHT
Charles presented the Aéroport de Paris’s goal to include new mobility with robotics and drones. As of today, airports are a no-fly zone for drones, but this will likely change. Their strategy sees a digitized airport, personalized services, the development of new services, the improvement of connectivity and the implementation of automation processes. In other words, their goal is to create a smart, safe and efficient airport.
To get there, urban air mobility requires the deployment of ground infrastructures like air traffic services as well as communications, surveillance and navigation aids. Experts will need to choose an airspace structure strategy between free flights and corridors. They’ll also have to manufacture safe and suitably equipped drones. And in alignment with René’s idea, a consistent set of standards is essential along with accurate and reliable data from trusted data sources.