EHang Holdings is to build a new production facility in Yunfu city in Guangdong, China, with a planned initial annual capacity of 600 autonomous air vehicles and an RMB42 million (approx. US$6 million) investment supported by the local government.
The facility is aimed to be established as an industry-leading AAV production centre, including an R&D facility for air mobility solutions and a training centre for operations and technical staff.
EHang Founder, Chairman and CEO, Huazhi Hu says, "The increasing market demands and commercialization of AAVs in China are driving us to expand our production and upgrade our manufacturing capabilities. The EHang Yunfu facility serves as an expansion of our existing facility and will support the growth of our air mobility business in China."
Meanwhile, the company's EHang 216 has obtained a Special Flight Operations Certificate (SFOC) issued by Transport Canada Civil Aviation (TCCA), said to be the first of this kind of permit for periodic operations of passenger-grade AAVs in North America.
With the certificate, trial flights of EHang 216 AAVs can be routinely conducted in Quebec province. Last September, EHang was invited to showcase its EHang 216 at the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO)'s 75th Anniversary ceremony in Quebec.
"We are pleased to see the EHang 216 receiving such an important certificate from the TCCA, following consecutive flight approvals received from aviation authorities in different countries, including the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, the Civil Aviation Authority of Norway and the Civil Aviation Administration of China," says Hu. "It conveys a positive signal from global regulators to establish a supportive and sustainable regulatory environment for the UAM industry. As a leader in the industry, EHang will continue to work with our customers and partners to provide safe, autonomous and eco-friendly air mobility solutions to the world."
The company has also announced the launch of a large-payload intelligent aerial firefighting solution. Based on its flagship product, this new version, dubbed the EHang 216F, is specially designed for high-rise firefighting. With hundreds of thousands of high-rise buildings in China, the Company believes the EHang 216F can become essential equipment for thousands of fire stations across China and eventually those around the world.
At a recent global launch ceremony in Yunfu, China, EHang revealed the 216F and demonstrated its capability to extinguish a high-rise fire. With a maximum flight altitude of 600 metres, the 216F can carry up to 150 litres of firefighting foams and 6 fire extinguisher bombs in a single trip. The 216F uses a visible light zoom camera to quickly identify the location of fire; it then hovers precisely in position and uses a laser aiming device to fire (in succession) a window breaker, the fire extinguishing "bombs" and then a full-range spray of firefighting foam. Multiple 216Fs can be deployed to rapidly extinguish the fire.
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