The concept of electric vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft should be familiar to all fans of sci-fi literature, movies, and video games.
Because of their ability to take off and land vertically, such aircraft are suited for operation in densely populated urban areas that would easily trap even small airplanes. Since eVTOL aircraft rely on electric propulsion, they generate much less noise pollution compared with traditional helicopters.
Now, Volocopter, a German eVTOL aircraft manufacturer based in Bruchsal has established a joint venture (JV) company with NEOM, a planned smart city in the Tabuk Province of northwestern Saudi Arabia that aims to realize a daring vision of what the future could be.
The goal of the new company is to design, implement, and operate the world’s first bespoke public vertical mobility system in NEOM. Once operational, the system will provide air taxi and logistics services and integrate with the rest of NEOM’s multi-modal and zero-emissions public mobility system.
“We are incredibly excited and proud to partner with Volocopter to make vertical mobility a reality here at NEOM. Volocopter is internationally recognized for leading innovation in the eVTOL industry and is a perfect match for our ambitious goals to create the first truly sustainable, shared, and seamlessly integrated mobility system in the world” said Florian Lennert, Head of Mobility, NEOM.
The JV has so far ordered 10 VoloCity passenger and 5 VoloDrone logistics aircraft from Volocopter, and plans are already in place to scale up activities from the beginning of 2022.
These first eVTOL aircraft will connect NEOM’s core urban development, called the Line, with other regional destinations. The Line is supposed to be a 170 km long linear city without conventional cars, and it will be home to over 1 million citizens when finished.
Samsung’s New Exynos 2200 Smartphone Chip Comes With AMD Xclipse GPU
The new GPU will enable next-level mobile gaming experiences, support 200 MP camera sensors, and ensure smooth performance under all circumstances.
Samsung’s Exynos smartphone series of ARM-based system-on-chips (SoCs) traditionally comes with Mali GPUs, but the company’s new premium SoC is breaking this tradition by featuring an Xclipse GPU with AMD’s RDNA 2 graphics architecture.
The new GPU, together with 8 Armv9 CPU cores (1 powerful Cortex-X2 core, 3 balanced Cortex-A710 cores, and 4 efficient Cortex-A510 cores) and an upgraded neural processing unit (NPU), are supposed to enable next-level mobile gaming experiences, support camera sensors with a resolution of up to 200 MP, and generally ensure smooth performance under all circumstances.
“Built on the most advanced 4-nanometer (nm) EUV (extreme ultraviolet lithography) process, and combined with cutting-edge mobile, GPU and NPU technology, Samsung has crafted the Exynos 2200 to provide the finest experience for smartphone users” said Yongin Park, President of System LSI Business at Samsung Electronics.
Samsung named its new GPU “Xclipse” to reflect the fact that it’s positioned between console and traditional mobile graphic processors. The South Korean conglomerate believes that the GPU will bring an end to the old era of mobile gaming and usher in a new era characterized by features that have until now been associated primarily with PC gaming, such as hardware-accelerated ray tracing and variable rate shading.
According to David Wang, Senior Vice President of Radeon Technologies Group at AMD, the Xclipse GPU is the first result of multiple planned generations of AMD RDNA graphics in Exynos SoCs, so fans of Samsung smartphones have a lot to look forward to in the future.
In addition to the already mentioned performance-oriented improvements, the Exynos 2200 integrates a better 5G modem capable of achieving speeds of up to 10 Gbps by utilizing both 4G LTE and 5G NR signals at the same time. The SoC’s Integrated Secure Element (iSE) can safely store cryptographic information for enhanced data security and privacy.
The Exynos 2200 is currently being mass-produced, and it’s expected that it will be one of the main selling points of the upcoming Galaxy S22 smartphone.