Could Hoverbikes be the Transportation of the Future?
I remember seeing ‘Return of the Jedi’ as a child and being awe-struck at the vision of such technology, I came out of the cinema wishing I could fly an X-Wing or a Speeder Bike like in the classic scene on Endor.
Sadly as I grew older I realized this was not to be. But perhaps I was wrong.
An engineer named Chris Malloy has just put his Hoverbike proposal on Kickstarter and there is also a Los Angeles based company called Aeroflex who are developing a hover bike of their own called Aero-X. Unfortunately it’s much bigger and a lot slower than a Star Wars Speeder Bike but I have renewed hope that a hoverbike will be available in the not to distant future, in a galaxy not so far far away…
Back to Chris Malloy, the Surrey based engineer. His original concept revealed three years ago, was for a twin bladed ‘copter that he claimed could reach speeds of up to 173 mph, that’s a little closer to the specification of a speeder bike. Clearly this kind of engineering feat is a huge undertaking and has required a fair amount of time in development, in the past three years Chris has been keeping himself busy improving his design.
He has now opted for a quad ’copter approach utilizing four propellers instead of two. Chris says “We are in the final construction stages of the latest manned prototype of Hoverbike, and in a few months we will start flight testing. After successful completion of test flights we will build a final engineering prototype for submission to aviation certification authorities”
So progress has certainly come along way and I for one am eager to learn how this project does. While you can’t join the waiting list just yet for the full size version you can pledge and get a 1/3 scale drone which was originally built as a proof of concept and looks fairly impressive on the Kickstarter video.
The quadcopter is super lightweight as its made from carbon fiber and comes in at 2.2kg but it has a maximum payload of 4.8kg which is fairly impressive. The ingenious design even folds up to make it easier to transport and can be used for delivering parcels or even mounting a camera so you can film your own Star Wars like special effects.
It’s a little expensive at over 500 pounds, but then dreams don’t always come cheap.
For more information on the Hoverbike you can visit the Kickstarter page or click to view the video.