Step aside, Mount Panorama: Flying Car Pioneer AirSpeeder Leverages Telstra’s Technical Expertise to Create an All-New Racing Format That Will See Pilots Fighting to Complete Air Circuits Using Electric Flying Cars normal size.
The ‘extreme and near’ Airspeeder EXA series will see pilots control Alauda Aeronautics’ flying cars on a large scale by remote control, seated in simulated cockpits from which every movement is transmitted to the fast flying cars in real time.
Created with the support of the concentration of space technologies and aerospace engineering in South Australia, unmanned “multicopters”, according to Airspeeder, have a greater thrust-to-weight ratio than an F-15 fighter jet – requiring quick reflexes that explain why pilots have been coming from the fields of aviation, motorsport and games.
Consultants from Telstra Purple – the company’s special projects consulting arm – will be deeply involved in the project over the next 12 months, helping Airspeeder develop the link between pilot cockpits and flying vehicles using of private 5G networks set up over three remote races. sites around the world.
Since 5G networks offer high speed and extremely low latency, fast vehicles will be able to respond almost instantly to control signals sent by pilots.
Each driver in the race receives an identical vehicle, which reduces confounding factors and ensures that the competition is all about the skills of the drivers.
Like collision avoidance systems that are quickly becoming the norm in modern automobiles, flying cars use LiDAR and radar-powered “virtual force fields” that detect other vehicles nearby and automatically hijack the vehicles, ensuring they don’t. not collide in midair.
The flying vehicles are riddled with sensors, generating terabytes of data that will be relayed by the vehicles and stored in an AWS cloud environment for further analysis by engineers.
Airspeeder’s EXA support environment combines real-time telemetry, 5G racing communication network, a real-time telemetry data visualization platform and a range of applications, including the fan experience aspect
The Airspeeder in action. Photo: Supplied
“For a technical sport like this, it will fundamentally be data-driven data,” said Paul Nicholls, head of digital transformation at Telstra Purple, noting that the architecture would also support “ Fully immersive 5G-powered viewer experiences such as augmented reality and virtual reality representations of the action.
The technologies “will enable a new way of experiencing what is essentially a next generation of sporting events,” he said, noting that “more traditional content-driven sports” are complemented by time telemetry data. real to create a new mixed reality. the environment – as seen at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics this year.
Test bench for the real thing
Alauda Aeronautics is one of the many contenders for commercialization of flying cars, having made the first test flights of its Mk3 electric flying racecar near Adelaide in June.
And for all the fun of competition, the project also serves a larger purpose as a test bed for possible electric manned vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) airplanes, as flying cars are officially known.
Mk3 vehicles contain robot “aviators” that mimic the movements of their human pilots, providing performance data that will help engineers understand how vehicles would react if they had a real human sitting inside.
This information, in turn, will help refine the safety mechanisms for possible electric manned cars – a longer-term goal that Airspeeder CEO Matthew Pearson says has remained a motivation for everyone involved.
“Besides the fact that you’re going a little too fast,” he explained, “a racing environment is an environment favorable enough to prove technology – pushing technology to its limits in a controlled manner. “
Ongoing R&D was helping the rapidly changing industry overcome “significant hurdles,” he said, noting constantly changing battery technologies and the efforts of regulators to keep up with rapidly changing technologies.
Battery technology “isn’t quite there to make it easier for the industry,” Pearson explained, “but we think it’s coming. And there are regulatory hurdles because vehicles are being invented while regulators are trying to figure out how to regulate new planes. “
Amid concerns about potential cyber attacks, the industry quickly turned to flying cars this year, with Hyundai and Uber building a fleet of flying taxis and Uber choosing Melbourne as its only non-U.S. Location to test flying taxis.
“We believe that all challenges can be solved,” said Pearson, “but in the meantime the technology is there and it has been sufficiently proven. We want to speed that up and make sure there is acceptance in the future as well. “
In July, the rural Narromine Shire Council airfield district of NSW welcomed flying car developer AMSL Aero as its primary tenant.
Communications providers like Telstra will be critical in supporting the larger flying car ecosystem, said Pearson, with extensive R&D and billions of dollars spent on work to ensure that every flying vehicle can be guided between “skyports” and the “vertiports”.
“Leveraging Telstra’s 5G network and technologies in this ecosystem is becoming really important in determining how we can take big steps forward by pushing the boundaries of what is possible,” said Nicholls.
This technology “really has a way of transforming the way we move in cities and accelerating mobility technology for mass benefit. Everything we have done today is going to continue in different forms as we move forward.