New investment by US Air Force gives lift to autonomous flying cars

On Wednesday, Metawave Corporation, a wireless technology firm, landed a coveted “phase one” contract with the US Air Force (USAF)—one it hopes will lead to critical innovation within aerospace. The goal of the agreement is to furnish high-precision, all-climate sensors for USAF’s aircrafts…

Metawave’s SPEKTRA, which is an analog antenna system, was initially created to give the automotive industry high-precision radar capabilities, which the company says is accurate out to 330 meters. Currently, the system is being used for next-generation cars, which includes things like adaptive cruise control, lane change assistance, and automated braking.

Metawave told the USAF that SPEKTRA could be altered and used for its Electric Vertical Takeoff and Landing aircrafts (or eVTOL). Among other things, Metawave says it can enable precision eVTOL navigation, which would include things like automated avoidance of obstacles.

The partnership came about from a USAF initiative called Agility Prime, which was started to spearhead the development of technologies for operational, human-rated eVTOL aircrafts by 2023.