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EHang reveals plans to deploy its passenger drones for emergency organ deliveries

TechCrunch TechCrunch 4/05/2016 Brian Heater

There were plenty of questions surrounding the actual real world functionality of EHang’s impressive human-sized drone when it made its debut on the CES floor back in January.

Was the Chinese manufacturer actually planning to bring the thing to market, or was the giant quadcopter more of a (admittedly quite effective) promotional tool to help attract attention to the rest of its more reasonably-sized UAVs?

This morning the company announced an agreement set to deploy a fleet of the vehicles for an admirable cause. Maryland-based Lung Biotechnology PBC plans to help customize the 184, in order to provide organ deliveries to transplant patients, as part of a program the companies are referring to as the Manufactured Organ Transport Helicopter (MOTH) system.

It’s a lofty 15 year plan that’s still in its early stages, but according to a statement from the biotech firm’s CEO, Martine Rothblatt, the partnership could one day contribute to the delivery of hundreds of organs a day.

The 184 is capable of passenger flights of more than 10 miles, with speeds of up to 65 MPH, which could make the vehicle well-suited for emergency transplants across relatively short distances.

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