Sci-Fi to reality. Flying cars and all.
Rafi Yoeli has an unconventional solution to saving people from burning high-rises or rescuing soldiers trapped behind enemy lines: a flying car. Yoeli already has gotten a rudimentary vehicle off the ground – about three feet – and hopes to see a marketable version of his X-Hawk flying car by 2010….
Like a similarly sized helicopter, X-Hawk will be able to take off vertically, fly up to 155 miles an hour and as high as 12,000 feet and remain aloft about two hours, Urban Aeronautics says.
But encased fans will replace the exposed rotors that keep helicopters from maneuvering effectively in urban areas or dense natural terrain because they have to stay clear of walls, power lines and mountain ridges. And a patented system of vanes is designed to afford the vehicle greater stability. Urban Aeronautics says vehicles will be able to sidle right up to a building.
No I haven’t gone all Sci-Fi on you all, rather, this is being touted as the next big thing in urban emergency and safety. The ultimate design is hoped to be more like a truck in capacity than a private vehicle, able to carry fuel equipment and personnel.
Rafi seems like an inspired sort of guy, not scared of imagining things…
“You sit in a traffic jam, and everyone gets this urge: I want to get up now, and over this,” he said. “You need a certain kind of machine. I think X-Hawk can do it.’
The name is pretty cool too.