Most Read This Week: Flying Car Parachute Tested, Boston Dynamics Gives Robot Dog Personalities

Also inside, Boeing hit by cyberattack and flying vehicles achieve breakthrough with FAA, Air Force deal

Scarlett Evans, Assistant Editor, IoT World Today

November 3, 2023

3 Min Read
XPENG AEROHT multi-parachute rescue system parachute deployment test

Here are IoT World Today’s most read stories this week: 

Flying Car Parachute Tested; Vehicle Intact

An electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) vehicle company in China has created a parachute deployment system for its flying vehicle.

Xpeng Aeroht, a subsidiary of Chinese automaker Xpeng, introduced the parachute system at the fifth annual Tech Day held in Guangzhou, China.

In a video of the demonstration, four separate parachutes rapidly open when the vehicle is at an altitude of 164 feet.

After deployment, the vehicle descends at 16 feet per second, according to the company.

See the parachute system's moment of deployment >>>

Flying Vehicles Breakthrough Accelerated by FAA, Air Force Deal

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the U.S. Air Force have signed an agreement to work together on the integration of eVTOL (electric vertical takeoff and landing) vehicles into the National Airspace System.

Under the deal, which was signed by the FAA and AFWERX, the innovation arm of the U.S. Air Force, the partners have set a target of 2028 for aerial vehicles to be fully operational.

The Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) Implementation Plan introduced by the FAA details the steps and processes for aerial vehicle operations to be regulated and certified.

Related:Most Read This Week: Flying Car Gets OK to Fly in Italy, Bill Gates Backs Self-Driving Company

The FAA will reportedly be considering the aircraft itself, the framework for operations, access to the airspace, operator training, infrastructure development, environmental impacts and community engagement. 

Read more about the deal >>>

ChatGPT Gives Boston Dynamics Robot Dog Personalities

Boston Dynamics is using ChatGPT to give its robot dog Spot a range of personalities, as well as conversational abilities. 

In a video showcasing the new capabilities, Spot is shown giving visitors a tour of Boston Dynamics’ facilities, assuming personalities including a British butler, a 1920s archaeologist, a teenager and a Shakespearean actor.   

The team said the project turns Spot into a “chat (ro)bot,” bringing the advancements from generative AI into dynamic robotic applications.

Using the large language model, Spot can now understand and respond to questions, identify and explain objects in its environment, and autonomously plan actions in response to different scenarios.

See Spot’s new capabilities in action >>>

Tesla Autopilot Tech Found Not to Blame in Fatal Crash

A jury in California has found Tesla’s Autopilot driver-assistance technology not to blame for a fatal crash in 2019.

The landmark case was the first time the electric automaker faced a trial in the U.S. over allegations that its Autopilot caused a fatality.

The lawsuit, which was heard in Riverside Superior Court, alleged that Tesla knowingly supplied cars with a defective Autopilot system. This ultimately led to a crash that killed Model 3 owner Micah Lee and seriously injured two passengers, including an eight-year-old boy.

Tesla denied the Autopilot tech was faulty and argued that it was unclear if it was even engaged at the time. The jury’s final vote said that the vehicle did not have a manufacturing defect.

The result could set a significant precedent for upcoming lawsuits involving autonomous vehicles, both Tesla’s and other automakers

Read more about the case here >>>

Boeing Hit by Cyberattack; System Data Compromised

Boeing has confirmed it is dealing with a “cyber incident,” days after the company was listed on the leak site of the LockBit ransomware gang.

While the threat is no longer on the Lockbit website, the gang listed Boeing on its “victim” list and threatened to leak a “tremendous amount” of data from the aerospace company if it didn't pay a ransom.

While further details on the leak were not disclosed, a Boeing spokesperson said the issue was not affecting flight safety.

Read more about the incident >>>

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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