CES 2016: World’s first human-carrying drone is the closest we’ve come to a flying car

Personal mini helicopters that get us from A to B seem like a far away innovation of the future, but we might be closer than that.

At CES 2016, Chinese drone manufacturer Ehang Inc has revealed its new Ehang 184 drone, which is the first ever autonomous aerial vehicle that can carry a human being.

It looks a little like a personal helicopter, but with four rotors around the side. On a full charge this drone can fly two hours straight with up to 220 pounds of weight on board.

All change

It’s large enough to fit one person and a small backpack, and for comfort there’s air conditioning on board as well as a reading light so you can entertain yourself if you get bored of looking out the window/desperately need to find the “emergency eject” section of the instructions.

ehang 184

The Ehang 184 can reach up to 63 miles per hour and can fly at a maximum altitude of 11,500 feet. It’s designed to fly an average of 1,000 to 1,650 feet from the ground.

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ehang 184

It’s unlikely this prototype vehicle will be taking the air on a mass basis in the near future.

The company’s CEO said it had done over 100 flights in the Guangzhou, but the idea of a human inside a drone only complicates matters when it comes to drone policy.

But the way this could be applied is very interesting. It’s not only the idea of automated and unmanned flight that has us intrigued. For example, these drones could also be used in rescue missions for hard-to-access areas.

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