Full video of the panel discussion held at the 2019 ATM Research and Development Seminar in Vienna on 21 June.
Moderators: Sandy Lozito (NASA) and Munish Khurana (EUROCONTROL)
Participants: François Sillion (Uber Elevate), R. John Hansman (MIT), Natesh Manikoth (FAA), Parimal Kopardekar (NASA), Joerg P. Mueller (Airbus)
The urban air mobility (UAM) was the most hotly-debated topic at this years seminar and was the subject of a keynote speech and a panel discussion. Questions about the development of UAM included:
Will UAM revolutionise mobility in cities - or will it just be an exclusive and expensive mode of transport for a small number of very wealthy customers?
How long will it take to improve the technology to the level that demonstrates that UAM aircraft are perfectly safe and will have a negligible impact on the environment?
Who will provide traffic management services and how much will they cost?
Will we have air buses rather than air taxis?
How will the low-altitude aircraft integrate with airports - and will they be allowed anywhere near large hubs?
Will shared air transportation be operational in 2023, as Uber advocates, or will it be repeatedly delayed due to technical and legislative obstacles, such as we have seen with autonomous ground vehicles?
Nobody can answer these questions with any degree of certainty at this stage, but the seminar helped experts with markedly different views exchange their ideas, concerns and latest research results on the topic.
The seminar was organised jointly by the US Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and EUROCONTROL; it covered the most recent research from both sides of the Atlantic. The conference allowed prominent ATM researchers to present and exchange their most recent findings, so contributing to the development of globally relevant solutions.
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