In­no­va­tion: NASA’s new mono­rail

SkyTran’s NASA-de­signed mag­netic mono­rail soars high above in­ner-city con­ges­tion

Australian T3 - - CONTENTS -

You hear th­ese things are aw­fully loud? No, SkyTran glides as softly as a cloud!

COST­ING JUST $10 MIL­LION PER km to con­struct, this To­mor­row’s World taxi rank is ac­tu­ally a damn sight cheaper than you might ex­pect. De­vel­oped in the US by NASA en­gi­neers for even­tual in­stal­la­tion in Tel Aviv, the SkyTran func­tions just like a mini-cab ser­vice – al­beit one that hov­ers above the streets on mag­nets.

Pods will reach speeds of up to 240km/h thanks to Ma­gLev tech (mag­netic le­vi­ta­tion) with each ve­hi­cle’s in­te­grated mag­net sync­ing with the mono­rail coils to cre­ate a field. It’s this, rather than me­chan­ics, that holds them in place, mean­ing no travel-slow­ing fric­tion.

Each pod holds a max­i­mum of six pas­sen­gers and can be sum­moned to a cho­sen sta­tion us­ing an app. Set your des­ti­na­tion and time of de­par­ture, hop aboard, and let SkyTran whisk you away. There’s even an on-board TV to dis­tract you from the speed and rather long drop be­low.

Think­ing this sounds a bit sci­ence fic­tion? SkyTran as­sures us it will be sci­ence fact by late next year, with a 488m test loop planned to shut­tle pas­sen­gers a ten­ta­tive 72km/h across the Is­rael Aero­space In­dus­try cam­pus. If suc­cess­ful, it shifts to Is­rael’s fi­nan­cial cen­tre and the speed triples. Scream if you wanna com­mute faster…, out 2016

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