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The Chinese manufacturer EHang has recently received a license to use unmanned drones to transport cargo. This is the same company that created taxi drones.

EHang 216 – a drone with 8 motors and 16 rotors was first presented to the world in 2016. Recently, the manufacturer of this model received a commercial license from the Chinese Civil Aviation Administration to use AAV (autonomous aerial vehicle) class drones for transporting cargo.

As the company explains in a press release, this is the world’s first permit for drones in this category – they will be able to transport goods weighing up to 150 kg. The Chinese company will use EHang 216 drones for transportation. 

Drones will operate in the Chinese city of Taizhou in Zhejiang Province, transporting cargo between flat sites and those on the hill, as well as between the coast and the islands.

After the tests in this location are completed, the company intends to introduce logistics services in other locations.

The company was licensed under the pilot (transitional) rules for UAVs, which the Chinese Civil Aviation Administration implemented in February 2019 for various categories of autonomous air vehicles (AAVs), including those intended for passenger transport. The authorities allowed the company to carry out pilot tests to investigate the possibility of autonomous drone flights.

The EHang 216, recently approved for freight transport, is also a two-person electric air taxi, which is reported to have a maximum speed of 130 km/h. The maximum flight time on one charge is 21 minutes. 

Photo is illustration, credit @ Mollyrose89/ Wikimedia Commons

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