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Aerospace

Earn a Degree in Flying Cars, Yes Really

25 January 2018

Flying cars have been a thing of imagination in science fiction for a long time, but with advancements in the technology, they are inching toward becoming a reality. Uber’s CEO recently went on record saying flying cars will be in the sky in 10 years. PAL-V introduced its first flying car about six months ago following AeroMobil saying it was taking preorders for its flying car in April 2017.

Naturally with the technology lifting off, the demand for engineers who can build, design and proliferate the technology will be needed. Enter Udacity with a new online degree program offering students the ins and outs of flying cars.

Udacity will provide a number of experts to teach the class including instructors from MIT, Amazon Robotics and the man known as the “father of flying cars,” Sebastian Thrun.

The course is divided into two terms. The first of which is learning the fundamental concepts of aerial robotics. Students will be able to learn what’s required to design and develop robots that fly working with quadrotor test platforms and flight simulators that implement planning, control and estimation solutions in Python and C++.

The second term will delve into the details of intelligent air systems for flying cars and coordinated autonomous systems. Students will receive an introduction to fixed-wing aircrafts and will learn how to update and optimize vehicle parameters and routes over flying car missions. Then students will learn to coordinate entire fleets of flying cars with real-world systems and regulations. This will lead to a final project that deals with a “flying city finale.”

“Flying cars and other aerial robots cannot be treated in isolation,” says Nicholas Roy, MIT professor and instructor. “They will fly amongst countless other robots. Our second term empowers students with the ‘systems thinking’ mindset and the software skills to build intelligent air systems.”

Udacity is taking applications for the online degree program right now. To learn more, visit. https://www.udacity.com/course/flying-car-nanodegree--nd787.

To contact the author of this article, email Peter.Brown@ieeeglobalspec.com


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