Highlights from the 2014 LA Auto Show

Aviation

E-volo's Volocopter takes to the air for the first time last month

The maiden flight of e-volo's 18-rotor Volocopter electric aircraft prototype last month seems to have impressed quite a few people. The company is claiming a European crowdfunding record after raising €1.2 million in under four days.  Read More

Artists drawing of the Zee.Aero concept for a vertical take-off-and-landing (VTOL) flying ...

Zee.Aero, a small company located near the GooglePlex, home to Google, is working on a flying car concept that can take off and land vertically using a plethora of small electric motors turning four-bladed propellers. According to illustrations included with the patent filings, one version of the vehicle is narrow enough to fit into a standard shopping center parking space.  Read More

Artist's concept of the HammerHead UAV on a mission (Photo: Piaggio)

There was an unusual shape in the skies over Italy last week as the Piaggio Aero Company and Selex ES successfully completed the first flight of the aptly-named Hammerhead UAV on Thursday, November 14, near the Trapini Air Force Base. The aircraft was remotely controlled from the ground, with no crew on board, while two chase planes kept the UAV in sight during the flight.  Read More

The ESTOLAS combines features of a plane, helicopter, hovercraft and airship in one aircra...

As evidenced by ongoing efforts in the Philippines in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan, getting aid and support personnel in and victims out of disaster-stricken areas is a major problem when infrastructure such as runways has been rendered unusable. A new aircraft concept combining features of an airship, plane, helicopter and hovercraft that is being developed as part of the European Commission's Extremely Short Take Off and Landing On any Surface (ESTOLAS) project could help address the problem.  Read More

Passengers on European airlines will be able to use mobile electronic devices 'gate-to-gat...

The European Aviation Safety Agency is following in the footsteps of the US Federal Aviation Administration by easing restrictions on the use of Personal Electronic Devices (PEDs) by passengers during flights.  Read More

JetBlue flew the first flight under the new regulations (Photo: JetBlue)

On Thursday, the US Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) eased regulations against airline passengers using their Personal Electronic Devices (PED) during the flight. On Friday at 4:30 PM EDT, only 15 minutes after receiving FAA approval for the regulation change, JetBlue’s Flight 2302 from New York's JFK to Buffalo became the first commercial flight to allow passengers to use their PEDs gate-to-gate.  Read More

Artist's concept of the World View balloon capsule in flight (Photo: World View Enterprise...

The newest entry in the fledgling space (or near-space) tourism sector will see passengers take a balloon ride to an altitude of 30 km (18.6 mi) from where they will be treated to a spectacular view of the Earth. World View Enterprises has now obtained US Federal Aviation Administration approval for its proposed balloon experiences, which will cost US$75k, and are projected to begin in 2016.  Read More

A Gulfsteam G650 has set a new world record for the fastest westbound, around-the-world fl...

Even before it received type certificate from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in September 2012, the Gulfstream G650 was racking up the records, thanks in large part to its Mach 0.925 top speed. The latest record it has claimed is for the fastest westbound, around-the-world flight for a non-supersonic aircraft, which the G650 completed in 41 hours and seven minutes.  Read More

The Aeromobil flying car designed by Stefan Klein takes to the skies for the first time

There is a saying in flying: “If it looks good, it will fly well.” Stefan Klein, a designer from the Slovak Republic, has announced the first flight of his Aeromobil Version 2.5, a flying car prototype he has been developing over the last 20 years. This vehicle is a strikingly beautiful design with folding wings and a propeller in the tail. But will its flight capabilities match its looks?  Read More

The TerreFugia Transition performed a 20-minute demonstration flight at EAA AirVenture Osh...

There was a ray of hope recently for those who are looking forward to a car that’s a bit more Blade Runnery as Terrafugia's Transition flying car made its first public flights at EAA AirVenture in Oshkosh, Wisconsin. There, the Terrafugia team conducted two 20-minute flight demonstrations and also showed off the capability for the Transition's wings to be folded up so it can be driven about like a car.  Read More

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