ATTOL: Autonomous Taxiing, Take-Off and Landing test flight


Sign in to report inappropriate content. Airbus has successfully performed the first fully automatic vision-based take-off using an Airbus Family test aircraft at Toulouse-Blagnac airport. The test crew comprising of two pilots, two flight test engineers and a test flight engineer took off initially at around 10h15 on 18 December and conducted a total of 8 take-offs over a period of four and a half hours.

Interpretability: Cracking open the black box – Part III


Previously, we looked at the pitfalls with the default "feature importance" in tree based models, talked about permutation importance, LOOC importance, and Partial Dependence Plots. Now let's switch lanes and look at a few model agnostic techniques which takes a bottom-up way of explaining predictions. Instead of looking at the model and trying to come up with global explanations like feature importance, these set of methods look at each single prediction and then try to explain them. As the name suggests, this is a model agnostic technique to generate local explanations to the model. The core idea behind the technique is quite intuitive. Suppose we have a complex classifier, with a highly non-linear decision boundary.

ANA starts testing autonomous bus operation at Haneda Airport

The Japan Times

ANA Holdings Inc., the operator of All Nippon Airways Co., said Wednesday it has started testing a semi-autonomous bus that will transport passengers and staff working at Tokyo's Haneda Airport. The company will conduct the test with the electric bus capable of carrying 57 passengers on a 1.9-kilometer route through the end of this month, aiming to start trial operation later in the year. The vehicle, with level-3 automation, allows drivers to turn their attention away from driving and engage in different tasks. "As the Tokyo Olympics are approaching, we hope more passengers from around the world will see our latest technology," ANA Senior Executive Vice President Shinzo Shimizu said in a ceremony at the airport. In 2018, the number of passengers who arrived at and departed from the airport increased 2.1 percent to 85 million, according to Japan Airport Terminal Co. which manages the Haneda Airport facilities.

How this decade's tech changed the insurance industry PropertyCasualty360


Over the past decade technology has become increasingly interwoven into our daily lives and work. Back in 2010, tablets, battery-powered cars, augmented reality, smartwatches, consumer drones and smart speakers were hard to imagine. To say technology has transformed throughout the decade is an understatement. The same could be said of how technology has impacted the insurance industry in the 2010s. It has has enhanced how damage is assessed and claims are adjusted.

Iran Cracks Down as Protests Over Downing of Airliner Grow

NYT > Middle East

We first learned that it was a missile that took down a Ukrainian airliner over Iran because of this video showing the moment of impact. All 176 people on board were killed. To find out what happened to Flight 752 after it left Tehran airport on Jan. 8, we collected flight data, analyzed witness videos and images of the crash site, to paint the clearest picture yet of that disastrous seven-minute flight. We'll walk you through the evidence, minute by minute, from the plane's takeoff to the moment it crashed. Iran has just launched ballistic missiles at U.S. military targets in Iraq in retaliation for an American drone strike that killed Iranian military leader Qassim Suleimani.

Passenger waiting for flight takes over airport screen to play video games

FOX News

No word on whether or not the passenger made it to the next level. A passenger waiting for a flight at an Oregon airport needed a bit more screen space for his video game so he plugged his Playstation 4 into a computer screen that had been displaying a map of the airport. Kara Simonds, a spokeswoman for the Port of Portland, told KXL-AM radio in an on-air interview that Portland International Airport staff asked the man to stop gaming on the public map display. He asked if he could finish his game. They said no, and the situation resolved peacefully.

'PigeonBot,' first robot to bend its wings like a real bird, is unveiled

FOX News

Fox News Flash top headlines for Jan. 16 are here. Check out what's clicking on Could pigeons be the model for a new generation of flying robots? That's what the researchers who built PigeonBot, a robotic pigeon with actual feathered wings, seem to be betting. Having birdlike wings could help airborne machines make better turns in tighter spaces, such as in dense urban environments or forests, a roboticist who was not involved in the study explained to Science News.

World 'will not rest' until questions are answered on Iran jetliner's downing: Canada

The Japan Times

LONDON – Canada's foreign minister on Thursday vowed to push Iran for answers about the mistaken downing of a passenger plane after the U.S. killed one of Tehran's top commanders. Iran had just hours earlier fired strikes against U.S. troops stationed in Iraq in retaliation for a drone attack that killed its most prominent general, Qassem Soleimani. "Families want answers, the international community wants answers, the world is waiting for answers and we will not rest until we get them," Francois-Philippe Champagne said at a meeting in London. Champagne was speaking after talks with counterparts from countries whose nationals were among the 176 people killed when the plane was hit after taking off from Tehran last week. Fifty-seven of the victims on board the Kyiv-bound Ukraine International Airlines flight were Canadian.

A robot equipped with real pigeon feathers flies like a living bird

New Scientist

A robot that resembles a pigeon and can make tight turns like real birds may point to the future of aerospace engineering – a continuously morphing wing. Understanding exactly how birds fly has always been tricky, because individual wings are made up of multiple feathers. These feathers are always interacting with each other, allowing the bird's wings to morph continuously mid-flight. To learn more, David Lentink at Stanford University in California and his colleagues first looked at the wing of a pigeon cadaver. Each wing had 40 feathers, 20 on the upper side, and 20 on the lower.

Toyota makes a new $394 million bet on flying taxis

The Japan Times

SAN FRANCISCO – Toyota Motor Co. is making a $394 million (¥43.3 billion) investment in Joby Aviation, one of the handful of companies with the seemingly implausible goal of making electric air taxis that shuttle people over gridlocked highways and city streets. Toyota is the lead investor in Joby's $590 million Series C funding, alongside Baillie Gifford and Global Oryx and prior backers Intel Capital, Capricorn Investment Group, JetBlue Technology Ventures, SPARX Group and its own investment arm, Toyota AI Ventures. The deal, for now, makes the Santa Cruz, California-based Joby the best-funded "eVTOL" (electric vertical take-off and landing) startup in a booming category that must overcome significant regulatory hurdles and concerns about passenger safety and noise, bringing the total money it has raised to $720 million. "Air transportation has been a long-term goal for Toyota, and while we continue our work in the automobile business, this agreement sets our sights to the sky," said Toyota President and Chief Executive Officer Akio Toyoda. "As we take up the challenge of air transportation together with Joby, an innovator in the emerging eVTOL space, we tap the potential to revolutionize future transportation and life."