Autonomous ambulance that took its first untethered flight is capable of landing in spaces that helicopters can’t, and will be able to airlift people

A drone ambulance designed to airlift two people has taken autonomously to the air for the first time.

The AirMule, which can take off and land vertically, is designed for conditions where landing a helicopter is unfeasible – such as on a battlefield. The drone, made by Israeli company Tactical Robotics, has seen recent setbacks in development but is designed to carry up to 450kg up to 31 miles.

The single-engined, internal rotor drone took to the air from a temporary testing facility set up at the Megiddo airfield after gaining clearance from the Israeli Civil Aviation Authority for untethered flight.

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