Archive for the Technology Category

SeaPhantom flying/floating wing

Posted in Technology on February 4, 2009 by twinforces

The SeaPhantom by Maritime Flight Dynamics is a marine craft which uses ground effect aerodynamics to transport passengers smoothly and effortlessly above the waves at speeds up to 100 mph.

The craft resembles a slightly futuristic small floating jet, which seats 5  and performs like an ordinary speedboat at speeds up to 35 mph.

Beyond 35 mph, however, the speed and the aerodynamical lift of the wing-shaped body forces air underneath it and it rises above the waves, continuing accelerating up to its top speed of 100 mph.

Energya ultralight futuristic racecar trike

Posted in Technology on January 26, 2009 by twinforces

The Energya is  a two-seater,tri-wheeler by The creative Unit and Higgins-Aube, with highly aggressive sci-fi-like  looks and specs..something like a mix between a Lamborghini Gallardo, a Lotus Elise, a Bugatti from the 30ies and a motorcycle.

It is designed like a racecar, but by using only three wheels, the designers were able to avoid  a lot of design regulations for four-wheel vehicles (which add significant weight) and instead work according to the less encumbering  regulations for motorcycles and three-wheelers.

The Energya has only HALF the weight of the small Lotus Elise, but roughly the same motor power…which probably will make it a very,very exciting ride, to say the least.

Currently, it is at the end of the concept stage, but Higgins-Aube says that it could be on the market in 18 months if they can find investors to start production.

Terrafugia Transition flying car

Posted in Technology on January 21, 2009 by twinforces

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The dream of a flying car has been around since the 50ies, when the first prototypes were made. However, no viable, serially produced models have emerged up to this date, something which might be about to change. According to the manufacturers, the Terrafugia Transition is a “roadable aircraft” with foldable wings, which runs on gasoline, which will be available to consumers by the end of 2009 and which will cost approximately $200 000.

The “roadable aircraft” designation comes from the fact that even though you can drive it on the road, and technically you could also take off from any sufficiently long road,you will need to get it to an airport for any airborne activities due to regulations. Once there, you initiate the wing unfolding procedure,after which you are ready to go.

also see:

Image gallery

Terrafugia corporate site

Ultralight antarctic speedster/explorer from Lotus

Posted in Technology with tags , on January 17, 2009 by twinforces

The vehicle in this entry is neither massproduced, nor available for acquisition by the general public, so strictly speaking it does not fit within the criteria for being reported here, but its design (and accompanying specs ), which gives it a distinct aircraft-like appearance, is just TOO intriguing not to mention.

Lotus, known for its fast and beautiful sports cars, has designed an ultralight vehicle, called the Concept Ice Vehicle which will join the upcoming Moon-Regan Transarctic Expedition in late 2009, where it will have a scouting role exploring the terrain ahead of the main expedition, hunting for obstacles and perils (such as deep cracks in the ice).

It has a small glass-fiber cockpit, 3 broad skis supporting it, and a rear-mounted propeller which powers the vehicle at speeds of up to 84 mph across the antarctic ice.
In addition, it is also equipped with a GPS-enhanced radar system which will be utilized in the terrain exploration, and the coordinates of any obstacles can be radioed back to to the rest of the team.

Wired Article

3 deep-sea personal submarines

Posted in submarine, Technology on January 15, 2009 by twinforces

The Ocean Pearl, the C-Quester 3, and the OrcaSub are 3 submarines for personal use which either are or will be available within a year or two, depending on model.
They do admittedly cost “slightly” more than the average person can afford….., but on the other hand they are not your average run-of-the-mill , hobbyist experimental submarines either, as their maximum operating depths vary between 100 and 700 meters
(yes, that is 700 METERS, and not feet…) and have endurances of between 6 and 12 hours.

Entry no.3 does hold special novelty value, as it possibly is the first real-life sub to emulate in both shape and performance the small shark-shaped one-man sub invented by professor Calculus in the episode “red Rackham’s treasure” of the TinTin comic book series by Herge

Electric cars : driving the revolution

Posted in Technology on January 10, 2009 by twinforces

Treehugger.com is currently running a feature on 23 state-of-the-art electric cars.

The first entry, the Tesla electric roadster, is certainly generating a lot of buzz currently, but beyond that it seems that the only two entries worth mentioning in this context are number 9 and 10.

The Tango, by Commuter Cars looks like a Cooper Mini that got stuck in a metal crusher, and got squashed to half its width,while still retaining its other dimensions..BUT..it does 0-100 kmh (60mph ) in 4 seconds (something that would seem like a rather scary experience in such a small & flimsy craft!..)

Aptera 2e, by Aptera Motors , on the other hand,rather resembles a sports aeroplane which has lost its wings.
(The photos on the company site possibly don’t render the idea of the vehicle in the clearest possible way, so you would probably like to do an additional search on Google Images.)

Icon A5 “Jet-ski/sports car” small airplane

Posted in Technology on January 7, 2009 by twinforces

From Wired Magazine:

What happens when an iraq war veteran F-16 fighter pilot and a skateboarding ex-banker meet and decide to design an aircraft?

Apparently, something like the hyperdesigned,easy-to-fly Icon A5 amphibian 2-seater, whose looks could most closely be described as something like the mix of a sports car, a jet-ski and a snowmobile,and with detachable wings for easy transport.

Icon Aircraft Corporate site