In 9 months, the Chinese company EHang Holdings, which has been calling itself a technology platform for Autonomous Air Vechicle (AAV) since its listing on the US electronic stock exchange, has made great strides.
They work in three areas, highlighting air mobility (including passenger transport and logistics), alongside intelligent urban management and air media solutions.
EHang was born from the encounter of two excellent spirits. Founder and CEO Huacsi Hu, and Seville’s revenue is a programming drone character who has a great sense of specialties. The company began operating in Guangzhou, among the scenery of a former French amusement park.
The two-person AAV was tested as a pilot on the way to work. On the other hand, drones conquered the world with light painting, where nearly 1,500 drones drew anything in the sky as a record. The “anthropogenic” drones – codenamed EHang 184 and EHang216 – were also designed by him for anyone to travel with. According to him, any person should fly freely like a bird.
The other co-founder, Derrikk Xiong, took the marketing and commercial line behind him with his practice in Singapore and Silicon Valley. It was a world sensation four years ago at CES in Vegas to blow up the mockup of the 184 unmanned cabin in eHang. But they ran too far forward because the world was only receptive to first-time pilot air taxis.
So retreating in silence, they came out in two years with the two-person pilot version, the EHang 216. It was then shown around the world, promoted in stadiums to the press, from governors to Arab princes to European CEOs on low-altitude elevations. Meanwhile, several types of capital raising, with a Chinese background, a global corporate approach, at the end of which last December they successfully debuted on the US electronic stock exchange.
For the marketing and sales function, the President and CEO proved a different kind of cannon. He is a full-time Asian research manager at Morgan Stanley, who has been involved in many large corporate share issues from the aerospace industry to other sectors of transportation. Edward Hu, who will lead the global regional marketing team as the company’s new Chief Strategic Officer.
Andreas Perotti, marketing and communications director at the Austrian FACC aircraft parts factory, will take part in European affairs. FACC, a strategic partner of eHang, the Vienna company, has been tasked with reducing the weight of the cabin by at least 100 kilos. In addition to the production line, Mr. Perotti also has extensive experience in telecommunications, government and the EU.
Europe is also highlighted because there is already co-operation with Spanish cities for the pilot flight of AAVs and Norway has already received its first foreign unmanned commercial license. On the other hand, their largest competitor is based in Europe, including the Volocopter air taxi, which is developing with Daimler’s background.
A few months is a permit from the Canadian Aviation Authority to allow unmanned test passenger flights to be conducted periodically in the province of Quebec. The license was certainly influenced by last year’s light painting and flight, which EHang presented at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) 75th anniversary celebrations in Montreal. This special operating license is the first in the American continent, China has previously been obtained. Unmanned passenger flights have been organized several times in China, with only one passenger each due to the corona virus.
In their annual report to the Nasdaq last year, they described that they had built more than 60 EHang 216 unmanned aerial taxis and arrived in the production hall.
A couple of months ago, they laid the foundation stone for their first factory in China, where they build 600 machines a year. The center will have multiple functions, including other air solutions and training for young people. The $ 6 million investment was supported by the Junfu City area and buildings.
In addition to previous rescue and cargo versions, a fire robot developed as the EHang 216F was recently introduced.With a maximum flight altitude of 600 meters, the 216F can carry up to 150 liters of water or fire foam and 6 fire bombs in one takeoff. The 216F uses a visible-light zoom camera to quickly identify the location of a fire. He then takes the best flight position and then fires bombs with his laser aiming device. But it can also spray water or foam on the fire from a distance of 10 meters with a sprinkler. Swarms can also go on the big fire.
China and the world is full of skyscrapers, multi-storey houses, all fire departments would love to use such robots. Only this is a huge market where the risk is lower than in passenger transport.