"Hover Car" System Planned in Tel Aviv
OK – I think the term “hover car” is a bit misleading, but the idea is cool none-the-less. It’s actually a suspended passive Maglev system with 2 passenger cars. The cars hang from an overhead rail, and can travel up to 150 mph.
California-based skyTran, who has developed this system, has recently partnered with Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) to build a 500m loop on their campus. This will serve as a pilot or test installation, and should be completed by the end of 2015. If all goes well, skyTran is planning other installations in San Francisco, India, and France.
The potential advantages of such a system is that it will combine the best of mass transit and personal transportation. Riders could summon a car with an app on their cell phone, then go directly to their destination. The system is entirely electrical, and could take advantage of distributed production methods, such as solar and wind.
Such a system could also help city congestion by removing passengers from the street. The cars take advantage of otherwise unused space 20 feet above street level. The Maglev system is also very quiet and the cars themselves are non-polluting.
Of course, as with any new ambitious system, the test installation will be critical to assess its actual performance, utility, and reliability. But if all goes well, suspended cars silently whizzing by overhead might become a common sight in major cities.