Middleeast

Dubai: A testing ground for future transport

Updated 1512 GMT (2312 HKT) May 6, 2018
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DP World Cargospeed, a collaboration between Virgin Hyperloop One and supply chain firm DP World, was recently announced in Dubai. Utilizing magnetic levitation technology, it hopes to move freight -- and people -- at over 600 mph, reducing delivery times and cutting the cost of goods transportation.

Scroll through the gallery to discover more about the transport revolution sweeping Dubai.
DP World
Modular autonomous buses, designed by Next Future Transportation in collaboration with ride hailing company Careem, is just one idea being floated for the emirate. Next Future Transportation
The 18-rotor Volocopter on a test flight in Dubai in September 2017. The autonomous vehicle has a cruising speed of 30mph and is being explored as a future taxi service for the city.
Volocopter/RTA
The drone taxi is being tested in collaboration with Dubai's Road and Transport Association (RTA). They hope that within the next five years the flying taxi service will have taken off and be a feature in the skies of Dubai.
The Volocopter is not the first flying taxi pursued by the emirate's transport authority. The Ehang 184 was developed in China and tested in Dubai at the beginning of 2017. Unlike the Volocopter the Ehang model was single-seat only, and was projected to cruise at a faster speed of 100kmph (62mph). Courtesy EHANG
The Ehang 184 shown on a test flight near an airfield outside of Dubai city. The drone has a 30 minute battery time, and air routes are planned from the ground via encrypted 4G. EHANG
Created by Russian tech startup Hoversurf, the Scorpion is a hoverbike which took to the skies of Dubai in October. After appearing at trade shows earlier in 2017, Hoversurf signed a memorandum of understanding with Dubai Police to develop the concept further. There have been reports the Scorpion has a top speed of 124mph, and would provide another fast response method, should the police's supercar patrol fleet be otherwise engaged. Hoversurf
Conceived by Elon Musk but being developed by a number of companies, hyperloop looks to update train technology by utilizing magnetic levitation and vacuum-sealed tubes. One company, Virgin Hyperloop One, is aiming to travel at speeds of 700mph -- more than twice as fast as the world's current fastest train. courtesy Hyperloop
Concept art for a Hyperloop One Dubai terminal. In October, company CEO Rob Lloyd told local news that construction will begin in 2019 with testing to commence at production level in 2021. courtesy Hyperloop
An electric-powered driverless EZ10 minibus, seen in Paris, 2016. Developed by French firm Easymile and Dubai-based Omnix International, the bus -- known as "The Smart Autonomous Vehicle" in Dubai -- drives along pre-programmed routes and features 360-degree sensors to monitor and react to its surrounds.
ERIC FEFERBERG/AFP/AFP/Getty Images
A two month testing period of the EZ10 was conducted in Dubai's Business Bay district in early 2017. The RTA reported 92% of survey respondents were satisfied with vehicle safety, while 80% within the 20-40 age bracket believed it cut congestion. WGNO
In September 2017, Dubai's state-run taxi service took delivery of 50 Teslas, the first installment of a 200-unit deal. The electric cars, a mix of Model S sedans (pictured) and Model X SUVs, already have semi-autonomous systems in place, with the hardware for a fully-autonomous experience installed and ready for future software updates. Tesla