A different take on flying cars, focused on usability and the human factor.
Opener Aero, based in Silicon Valley, California has unveiled their latest project called Black Fly. The BlackFly is a flying car that will require no actual pilot training so it will be available to the public. However, it will require a written pilot’s test and a familiarization procedure with the vehicle.
The BlackFly has been in development for 9 years now, starting its venture in Canada and then moving to the world’s startup capital. Opener has built an early prototype that is capable of traveling a distance of 25 miles at speeds up to 62 mph. Its lightweight construction allows the aircraft to consume less energy than a conventional electric car and is also nearly dead silent. Controlling it is humorously easy, pressing the thumb stick will shoot you up in the air and letting it go will freeze the vehicle in the air.
Powered by eight, small electric motors; the BlackFly is easily controlled by a joystick. In case of an issue, the aircraft features a ‘return to home’ button that will autonomously return it to a landing base. It is more similar to a human carrying drone rather than a hybrid vehicle. For extra security, the BlackFly can be equipped with a ballistic parachute for emergency landings. The aircraft has conducted more than 1,000 flights and flown over 10,000 aerial miles.
The objective of the BlackFly is to democratize three-dimensional transportation, especially in rural areas where roads might not always be the best option to get somewhere in terms of time and accessibility. As infrastructures of urban environments change to adapt alternative forms of transportation, other companies think how to use open rural spaces to change the way we move in space.