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Feds: New rules needed for Jetsons-like flying cars

(Image courtesy Pixabay)

(Image courtesy Pixabay)

They may not fold up into a briefcase as they did for George Jetson, but flying cars may not be too far away, explains a report in Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.

And that means sorting out “appropriate roles of federal, state, and local authorities,” says Bart Elias, a specialist in aviation policy at the Congressional Research Office.

It’s because they’ll be flying in public airspace and over large concentrations of bystanders, who have a right not to be endangered.

“Until recently … small hovercraft and drone-like air taxis existed only as prototype concepts and amateur-built curios,” he wrote.

But advances in design, propulsion, computer control and autonomous systems mean they soon could become reality.

“While Massachusetts-based Terrafugia has been working for more than a decade to develop a street-legal car that can transition to a flying machine, Chinese drone manufacturer EHang has developed a prototype autonomous single-seat quadcopter that looks similar to a scaled-up version of smaller personal drones that the company sells,” the report said.

German maker Velocopter and a startup with links to Google also are beginning tests.

Airbus, Embraer, Bell, Rolls-Royce and a Boeing subsidiary have launched programs.

“They are being designed specifically to transport people relatively short distances (roughly 5 to 25 miles) in urban areas with highly congested roadways,” he reported.

They all will be at lower altitudes, and traditional methods of controlling air traffic, radar and radio communications “are probably not viable.”

For the rest of this report, and more, please go to Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.

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