Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Flying Car

I found this article on Yahoo Buzz and had to share it. I have a few questions about this "flying car". Is it safe to put a child's car seat in it? (no way I'm putting my kid in there) Who is going to control the air traffic? Are there going to be cops in the air now? What about drinking and flying, what's the law on that? As far as cost goes, not bad for under $200,000. Although this is a great innovation and a cool mode of transportation, I think it would be a challenge to implement this in our current infrastructure. Not so say it won't be done, but I foresee a lot of headaches down the road. Maybe by the time my toddler is able to fly or drive there will be spaceships that can get us to and from the moon in only a few hours...

Flying Car a Step Closer to Realityby Mike Krumboltz

Weird-looking cars are a dime a dozen. Far less common are weird-looking cars that can also fly AND have approval from the Federal Aviation Administration. Indeed, as far as we know, there's only one of those babies: The Terrafugia Transition.
The private aircraft/funky-looking car has been in the news before. But the recent announcement that it's going into production sparked mega-searches on the Web. Almost immediately, online lookups for "terrafugia transition" and "terrafugia transition pictures" both, well, took off.
A popular article from the UK's Daily Telegraph explains that the FAA's special exemption allows the vehicle to function as both a "light aircraft" and a car. Normally, for a plane to meet the "light aircraft" designation, it can weigh no more than 1,200 pounds. The Terrafugia Transition weighs 1,320, due primarily to the number of car-related safety features, like airbags and crumple zones. The "light aircraft" designation is key, because licenses for planes with that label require only 20 hours of flying time. Fewer hoops to jump through means more potential sales.
So, how does the plane/car work? Check out the flying car's official video below. So far, 70 people have placed a deposit. The total retail cost: $194,000. Expensive, but really, can you put a price on skipping commercial flights?

1 comment:

  1. All of your questions have already been answered by existing regulations.

    When the plane is a car, it will have to follow the normal car laws. That means you need a drivers license, car insurance, a license plate and follow car laws.

    When the car is a plane, it will have to follow the same laws that all ultralights follow today. That means you need a pilots license, airplane insurance, have the plane registered and follow all of the FAA laws. That includes not taking off or landing from streets. In fact there are different type of pilots licenses, depending on the type of plane. The ultralight license limits you to fly under a certain altitude and distance. How far you can fly is dictated by how much gas you can carry, which is regulated by the type of license you have. You are also not allowed to fly in populated areas.

    You can in fact get an ultralight today for around $10K and you can fly it around.

    And finally, driving drunk is covered by all existing laws, just like driving a boat, or a bicycle drunk is fined.
    ~ Larry