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Drone display wobbles but breaks world record

The Chinese company has been awarded the Guinness World Record for achieving the highest number of drones flown simultaneously within a defined area of sky. However, the drones did not fly in the coordinated pattern. The drone were illuminated and the intention had been for the drones to create a light show.

Here the 1,374 drones were programmed to fly in set patterns and the aim was for them to spell out the date and the record-setting number of drones, through different colored illuminations. The South China Morning Post called Guangzhou-based EHang’s event an “epic fail”.

The drones were deployed above Xi’an’s 600-year-old city wall on a 13-minute flight that spread for more than a kilometer. The video below shows the drones in action:

According to the BBC, the record was previously held by U.S. technology company Intel. With the Intel attempt, 1,218 drone aircraft were flown at the 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympic Games in February. In addition, the Intel’s show was pre-recorded and not broadcast live at the games, in case something went wrong. At the time it was reported there were concerns relating to “possible freezing weather and strong winds”.

With the most recent record attempt, EHang were paid 10.5 million yuan ($1.5m) for the Labor Day performance in the north-western city of Xi’an.

While the display was designed to promote EHang in general, the company itself is better known for its efforts to launch a human-carrying drone service.

The EHANG 184 Autonomous Aerial Vehicle has achieved, according to the video, a series of manned flight tests carrying one and two passengers.

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Written By

Dr. Tim Sandle is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for science news. Tim specializes in science, technology, environmental, business, and health journalism. He is additionally a practising microbiologist; and an author. He is also interested in history, politics and current affairs.

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