Uber plans self-flying drone taxis

If you summon an Uber in 10 years’ time, you will probably get a car that drives itself. But then again, you may not be travelling in a car at all.

The taxi-hailing app is working on technology that would allow airborne passenger drones to fly its users short distances around cities, it has emerged, raising the prospect of a future in which skylines are dotted with Uber aircraft shuttling commuters back and forth.

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Stratolaunch – The World’s largest aircraft is almost ready

SEATTLE, July 22 — Seattle-based company Vulcan Aerospace announced that its Stratolaunch Systems, an air-launch platform for rockets, is close to completion.

According to the company’s website, the Stratolaunch has a wingspan of 385 feet and measures 238 feet in length. This six-engine aircraft is currently the world’s largest aircraft.

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Drone Racing: ESPN’s Newest Televised Sport


First there was poker. Then there was the spelling bee, Scrabble and the recent emergence of e-sports.

Now ESPN is betting that speeding drones will be the next noncontact “sport” to find a mass audience.

The Drone Racing League announced on Wednesday that it had signed deals to broadcast a 10-episode season on ESPN and ESPN2, along with the European stations Sky Sports Mix and 7Sports. The schedule begins with an introduction to drone racing on Thursday at 11 p.m. on ESPN2.

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Domino’s to kick off drone delivery testing in New Zealand


Domino’s introduced a pizza delivery drone in the summer of 2013, and now it is going to start testing actual pizza-by-drone deliveries soon. The testing will take place in New Zealand, and is being done in partnership with drone company Flirtey. The company isn’t offering too many details about its plan at this time, though it does say it will kick off the testing later this year and that it’ll happen alongside ordinary (read: people-powered) pizza deliveries.

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Introducing the self-flying security guard


Aptonomy Inc. has developed drone technology that could make prison breaks, robberies or malicious intrusions of any kind impossible for mere mortals.

Dubbing it a kind of “flying security guard,” the company has built its systems on top of a drone often used by movie-makers, the DJI S-1000+, a camera-carrying octocopter.

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China working on hypersonic spaceplane with horizontal takeoff


China is planning to take space exploration to a new level, as it develops a new “spaceplane” that could take off from a runway and fly at hypersonic speed before blasting into space and back.

The China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation (CATSC) is behind the project of a plane/spacecraft hybrid that will travel back and forth between the runway and space orbit at hypersonic speeds, Popular Science reported.

Development and testing is scheduled for the next three to five years. The first deployment date is estimated for 2030.

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