Boeing's Autonomous Prototype Crashes

 - June 12, 2019, 12:30 PM
The PAV (passenger air vehicle) Boeing's entry into the developing urban air mobility market crashed earlier this month after four successful unmanned test flights.

Boeing and its subsidiary Aurora Flight Science’s unmanned passenger air vehicle (PAV) prototype crashed June 4 during its fifth test flight in Manassas, Virginia, Aurora spokeswoman Luisa Guerra confirmed to AIN this week at the Uber Elevate Summit in Washington, D.C. Guerra said the crash is under investigation and a determination of cause is pending.

The vehicle previously had four successful test flights, Guerra noted, and it crashed in a closed area. “We are operating in a safe, confined space,” she said. “We follow strict protocols during flight testing.”

Guerra declined to disclose further details of the crash. The 30-foot-long, 28-foot-wide electric-powered vehicle completed its first flight on January 22. It is expected to have a range of up to 50 miles and operate autonomously from takeoff to landing.

The air-taxi concept demonstrator completed a controlled takeoff, hover, and landing during its first flight, with later tests focusing on forward, wing-borne flight and the transition between hover and forward flight.