Most Read This Week: Flying Taxi Company Plans Production in France

Also inside, lifelike humanoid robots shown operating inside a Chinese warehouse

Scarlett Evans, Assistant Editor, IoT World Today

May 17, 2024

3 Min Read
Close up of Lilium's jet

Here are the most-read stories in IoT World Today this week:

Flying Taxi Company Plans Production in France; $430M Investment

German electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) jet maker Lilium is in discussions to create high-volume production facilities in France.

The talks with the French government involve potential government subsidies and loan guarantees, with Lilium future investment reaching up to $430 million.

Lilium is already considering sites in France including in Nouvelle Aquitaine, noted for aerospace and battery production facilities. The company said it already has an order pipeline of 780 flying vehicles, including an order for 20 from UrbanLink, which plans to operate the EAVs in South Florida.

The Lilium electric jet is not yet ready for delivery, with the first flight tests with a pilot planned for later this year.

Discover more about Lillium’s jet >>>

Lifelike Humanoid Robots Shown Operating in Chinese Factory

A short video showing the inside of a Chinese humanoid robotics factory has been circulating on social media, showing a range of lifelike humanoids in various stages of development. 

Also in the video is a six-armed robotic backpack-like design with twirling humanoid hands.

Originally uploaded on TikTok by an unverified user, the clip claims to have been filmed on the factory floor at Ex Robots, a robotics company based in Dalian, China.

Related:Most Read This Week: Flying Taxi Carries First Passenger in Abu Dhabi

The company is known for its display robots, used in educational and corporate settings to demonstrate the possible future of humanoids, with 3D-printed silicone skin and human-like hair and clothing.

See the video for yourself >>>

City of Wichita Cyberattack Ongoing, Services Remain Down

The City of Wichita has released an update to a cybersecurity incident that started on May 5, informing its constituents that there is “no timetable” for when its systems could be coming back online.

Under its ‘frequently asked questions’ section, the city said the incident will be resolved “as soon as possible.”

While it is not yet clear if residents’ personal data has been compromised, the release noted public WiFi and payments are among the services impacted. However, essential services such as the police and fire department remain unaffected.

Ransomware gang LockBit has claimed responsibility for the attack, giving the city a deadline of May 15 to pay a ransom of an undisclosed amount.

Read more details >>>

Humanoid Robot Opens Bottle, Crushes Nuts

Unitree Robotics has unveiled its latest humanoid robot design, G1. 

In a video showcasing its flexibility and dexterity, the small-scale robot is shown standing up from a lying down position, walking around and withstanding kicks and punches from a human.

Related:Most Read This Week: World's First Running Electric Humanoid Robot Unveiled

G1 is also shown wielding a baton, picking up and crushing walnuts, frying bread and removing a drink bottle cap with a karate chop, although it spills most of the drink’s contents.

G1 joins Unitree’s existing H1 robot. The larger scale mode, measuring nearly 6 feet, broke the humanoid robot speed record in March, at 7.3 mph, breaking the previous record of 5.5 mph.

See the G1 robot for yourself >>>

Daimler Self-Driving Electric Truck Revealed

Daimler Truck has revealed its autonomous Freightliner eCascadia, created to showcase the benefits of electric propulsion and self-driving tech.

The prototype design is based on the current production Freightliner eCascadia, and features lidar, radar and cameras, a powerful compute stack and autonomous driving software from Daimler subsidiary Torc Robotics.

Although billed as a “research and advanced engineering project,” the AV is said to have the potential to evolve into a modular, scalable platform that could be used with different powertrains across a range of applications.

See Freightliner eCascadia in action >>>

About the Author(s)

Scarlett Evans

Assistant Editor, IoT World Today

Scarlett Evans is the assistant editor for IoT World Today, with a particular focus on robotics and smart city technologies. Scarlett has previous experience in minerals and resources with Mine Australia, Mine Technology and Power Technology. She joined Informa in April 2022.

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