The most promising hoverboard technologies reviewed
Hoverboards have become the ultimate transportation dream for many, in this post we look at 5 different promising technologies used in real hoverboards (the flying ones).
Popularized in 1989 by the classic cult movie, “Back to the Future II”, where Marty McFly races cars and bounces of walls, : a sleek, skateboard-like levitating platform that will glide you smoothly to your destination. No more trying to navigate the morning traffic or having to fervently pedal your bicycle climbing uphill roads. Hoverboards offer fun, ease of use, practicality and entertainment in one.
Best of all? Innovative individuals and companies are getting closer to building a commercially viable real hovering hoverboard.
Of course, with the majority of models being prototypes, there still still is some (major) tweaking to be done to help the levitating platform cover longer distances, but all in all, riders are well on their way to taking their hover boards on short trips. It should be noted that unlike gravity-laden, kids-oriented machines that stay firmly planted on the ground, the tech market does offer hoverboards that actually do hover. A rare and often expensive treat, these hoverboards are well-worth the experience. Most of them are still in their development phase, with further, more interesting modifications to be made to future models, but riders can now experience the unique sensation of actually defying gravity. A dream plucked straight out of a science-fiction movie, these hoverboards are equipped with safety features. Most of them employ a magnetic system to get off the ground.
While these hoverboards are on the expensive side, they can be considered as exclusive items of luxury since very few models are available on the market. Not only do these vehicles set you apart but they are also designed for speed, sleekness and safety.
|The fastest recurve crossbow in the market||A bit difficult to pull (Might be because of the draw weight)|
|Great Built Quality|
|Powerful, Fast and Quite (Doesn’t make any noise)|
ARCA BOARD-By Arca Space Corporation
- Technology used: 36 high-power electric ducted fans.
- The Arca board can generate 272HP and lift a person upto 110KG
- Max Flight speed is limited at 20km/h
Hailed by the creators as the very first revolutionary breakthrough in personal vehicles since cycles, airplanes and cars, the Arca Board will set you back at $14,900 but it’s undoubtedly worth every cent. Unlike self-balancing scooters, this board does actually hover, thanks to its staggeringly impressive 230,000 watts of installed power and 272 horsepower. With a maximum hovering endurance of six minutes, the Arca Board is surprisingly light at 180 pounds.
Best of all, it has been specially crafted to fly in just about every direction, including upwards and sideways.
This innovative machine was first unveiled in December 2015 and measures 145cm long by 75cm wide.
According to Dumitri Popescu, one of the creators at ARCA Space Corporation, the Arca Board has been specially fitted with 36 smallish electric ducted fans. This is in stark difference to non-hovering boards that are mainly equipped with large electric fans. As a result, the Arca Board can easily keep operating even if it happens to encounter multiple engine failures. It should be noted that each engine in the Arca Board is independently powered by its own series of batteries. Consequently, a multiple redundant system is created, which once again allows the machine to work even if one of the engines happens to fail. The high-powered duct fans can actually reach an impressive peak thrust of 430 pounds. These fans can generate approximately 45,000 rotations in just one minute.
To steer the hovercraft, riders can use the operating panels or use their bodies to turn left or right. A stabilization system is in place to ensure the safety of the rider. This safety panel is easily controlled by any smartphone. Crafted from composite materials, the Arca Board requires six hours to charge to full power, using the machine’s integrated “off box charger”. For a quicker charge, however, riders can also invest in the ArcaDock which can fill up the batteries in just half an hour.
To ensure a smooth operation, nearly 91% of the inner space is taken up by fans crafted to create and dissipate heat. Additionally, a high-level coding system has been integrated to ensure proper heat distribution and consequently provide an even smoother ride. This hoverboard has a weight capacity of 243 pounds. Two versions of the hovercraft are available for purchase: the Long Endurance version, which has a fly time of 6 minutes and can sustain up to 90kg of user weight, and the less expensive Enhanced Thrust version which has a weight capacity of 110kg for 3 minutes of fly time.
The onboard sensors limit the Arca Board’s speed to 20km/hour or less and can hover 30cm above ground level on a full charge. If needed, riders can easily turn off the stabilization system and control the movements through the body’s gravity.
The Arca Board’s technical specifications are as follows:
• Endurance: 3-6 minutes, depending on the exact model
• Maximum speed: 20km/h
• Maximum height above ground level: 30cm
• Noise level: 92 Db
• Maximum power: 272 HP
• Installed inner power: 203,000 W
• Motors: 36
• Maximum user weight capacity: 110kg
• Maximum user weight: 82kg
• Machine dimensions: 15cm x 76cm x 145cm
• Materials: Composite
The Arca Hoverboard is one of the few commercial hoverboards that’s actually for sale ($14,900).
More info: http://www.arcaspace.com/en/arcaboard.htm
- Technology used: Magnetic Field Architecture
- The Hendo Hoverboard needs a conductive non-ferrous surface and uses
electromagnetic repulsion to levitatee
One of the most exhilarating hoverboards on the market, the HENDO is particularly reputed for its disc-like shape. Visually appealing, this machine employs cutting-edge technology and powerful engines designed to help you soar beyond your wildest dreams. With a price tag that ranges between $10,000 and $13,000, the HENDO hoverboard is intended to be self-propelled. It is good to know that this self-powered machine features a steady levitating platform that can lift a fully grown adult off the ground.
Designed to levitate around one inch off the ground, the HENDO hoverboard works when placed above conductive surfaces. In fact, in the company’s demonstration video, the hovercraft is shown levitating above a semi-pipe ramp for a skateboard as well as a completely flat copper surface. This is because the first version of the HENDO hoverboard has been specifically constructed to float above non-ferrous metals in the likes of aluminum and copper. The prototype can actually sustain up to 300 pounds of maximum user weight. Future versions of the hoverboard may actually be constructed to accommodate up to 500 pounds of user weight- ideal for overweight to obese riders. This machine does require a propulsion system which will prevent it from drifting aimlessly. This is something that the developers are currently working on.
Indeed, according to Greg Henderson, Hendo developer and inventor, a bias can be imparted to manipulate the engines and provide a propulsion system. At the moment, riders can still lean from side to side to properly orient the hoverboard. This particular apparatus depends largely on its magnetic field which pushes itself off the ground by activating the levitating lift. Because it is devoid of any friction or wheels, the Hendo Hoverboard can easily be propelled and activated like a skateboard: all you have to do is push your foot against it and levitate. According to the creators, the Hendo hovercraft will soon be infused with an advanced technology to deliver forward momentum, hence eliminating the need for manual momentum.
A “Whitebox” device has additionally been included to adopt the same movements as the hoverboard. Described as a kit for developers, the “Whitebox” will be gifted to anyone who contributes $299 and more to the Hendo Hoverboard’s fund-raising campaign. It basically consists of a fully-functional Hendo hover engine along with a segment of hover surface. This is ideal for developers who want to personalize their hoverboards. In fact, if potential developers have an idea for the developer kit, the company will even help them start up their own hover project.
This particular item is still in its prototype phase, but a fund-raising campaign has been set up to provide contributors with special perks once the final version is launched. For example, according to its Kickstarter page, future riders who pledge $100 or more will be able to enjoy a 5-minute hoverboard ride to experience the unique thrill that comes with getting off the ground. By the same token, contributors who pledge $299 or more will be treated to a free “Whitebox” developer kit which they can use as they wish. Anyone who pledges $1000 or more will consequently receive an extended hoverboard ride under the guidance of a fully trained coach once the machine’s final version is launched.
To actually win a Hendo Hoverboard for free, one needs to pledge a sum of $10,000 or more.
More info: http://hendohover.com
Using magnetic levitation, the LEXUS hoverboard- also known as Slide- does live up to the manufacturer’s name. Not unlike Lexus cars, this particular hovercraft doesn’t fail to stun by its striking visuals and performance. Shaped like a skateboard, this apparatus is described by the company’s website as being among the “first real, rideable hoverboard.” This unique machine operates through magnetic levitation, which also produces an exceptionally smooth ride. In fact, to achieve a near-frictionless motion, the hoverboard uses superconductors that are cooled by the dissipation of liquid nitrogen within the machine.
A custom skate park has even been built in Barcelona where riders can test the Lexus Slide Hoverboard. This unique park drastically differs from others because magnetic tracks have been cleverly concealed underneath the main wood coverings, hence generating a powerful enough pull to get the Slide hoverboard off the ground and along the path. Best of all, downhill and uphills slopes were also built for added entertainment. Additionally, these slopes ensure that the hoverboard benefits from enough momentum to keep going across the magnetic field. In fact, instead of moving from the north pole along to the south pole- as is usually the case with magnets- the Lexus hoverboard has been designed to propel magnetic force upwards from the center and towards the outwards edges. As a result, the magnetic force is equally divided in both the right and the left side of the hovering craft, which will ensure levitation.
The liquid nitrogen tank does refill each 10 minutes, providing approximately half an hour of ride. More impressively, this hoverboard has been designed to work on a water-covered track, something that will undoubtedly please thrill seekers. Crafted to hover around 1-2 inches above ground level, this particular piece of equipment can accommodate a maximum user weight of up to 440 pounds. To mimic a realistic movement and consequently enhance the rider’s ease of use, Lexus actually partnered up with an experienced magnetic levitation engineer known as Dietmar Berger during the construction process. Additionally, advice was sought from Ludwig Schultz, an expert in superconducting levitation.
However, manufacturers are currently working on developing newer models to comfortably suit heavier users. With a superconductor temperature of -197C, the Lexus hoverboard prototype overcomes gravity by repelling the magnets in the pre-prepared skating track. As a result, riders can enjoy an impressively long ride of approximately half an hour.
Here are some technical specifications about the Lexus Slide Hoverboard:
Zapata FLYBOARD AIR
With a design that looks as though it’s been plucked straight out of a science fiction movie, the Zapata Flyboard Air is unique in this industry because it can actually travel at a staggering speed of 90mph. In fact, this particular equipment is so unique in its genre that the rights were actually sold to a department of US Homeland Security known as Implant Science. The inventor and developer, Franky Zapata, actually used this hover board to cover a distance of no less than 7,388 feet as he traveled through the French town of Sausset-les-Pins. According to the company, the Flyboard Air can actually fly up to a height of 10,000 feet. While traveling, however, Franky Zapata stuck to around 165 feet above ground level.
Because of its smooth operation and unique features, the Flyboard Air is actually being considered as a means of transport for soldiers. While specific details about the machine’s control panel have not yet been revealed to the public, videos have shown a joystick attached to the apparatus. The Flyboard Air is powered by no less than four 250HP engines. Unlike other hoverboards, this particular machine does not work by magnets or liquid nitrogen but is propelled by motors. This largely boosts the hover board’s power, enabling the rider to achieve heights that would have been impossible on another piece of equipment. This Flyboard is actually enhanced by an “Independent Propulsion Unit” which will actually allow you to fly complete hose-free over water. In fact, the original Flyboard was a vehicle that was once connected to a personal watercraft system.
OMNI Air Hoverboard
Described by critics as being a “small helicopter”, the OMNI Air Hoverboard is designed for the user to actually stand on top of the rotors, as opposed to just sitting underneath them as is the case with a real chopper. With a futuristic design and a huge ambition that lives up to its name, the OMNI Air Hoverboard operates through an upward force that fights gravity to propel the machine into the air. Therefore, the Omni Air pushes air downwards to exert force on the rotors and therefore push the levitating platform off the ground.
Its similarity to a regular helicopter is made more evident by how the rider can turn the machine from side to side as well as up and down. Unlike less developed and more traditional hoverboards, this model can actually be flown both over land and water alike, which will undoubtedly provide a unique thrill to riders. Best of all, since it is not restricted by magnets, it does not need any special kind of surface or metal to fly over.
The Omni hoverboard can easily be compared to an electrically-charged quadcopter because it is battery powered. While this provides adequate support to get the machine off the ground, the batters are on the heavy side, which means that the rider is limited to a mere two to three minutes of ride time. This is because the bulk of the batteries severely limits the propelling power.
Specializing in propeller-based hover crafts, this company currently has pending patents but the mark-1 Omni hoverboard prototype was actually able to cover an impressive distance of 905 feet and two inches. This justly earned the company a fresh record in the Guinness book of records for the longest distance that was traveled by a propelling hoverboard. This distance was actually covered by Canada-based inventor and developer Catalin Alexandru Duru, who flew the Omni hoverboard over a lake. In the promotional video, the inventor is shown maintaining a perfect balance as the hoverboard glides seemingly without any effort over a stretch of water. The inventor did point out that the Omni hoverboard tends to fly dangerously high, which means that the adequate precautions need to be taken. This is why it’s advisable that newbies try their machine out over water first, before flying over solid surfaces. Proper equipment should also be worn, especially when one considers the staggering power packed by this machine.
Omni Hoverboards Inc has already submitted patent applications for this particular flying vehicle. Future riders will be glad to know that the company has already started to work on a second prototype which promises a sleeker, most sophisticated look as well as added power and safety. This hovercraft has a carbon-fiber surface and uses 16 lithium-polymer batteries as well as eight propellers.
Future of real hoverboards
So what does the future of hoverboards look like? Remember 1973 when the first mobile phone was invented! Look at where we are now
The problem with the hover technologies that exist today is that they work very well in carefully structured environments, but science does not allow them to work in open air (yet). Possibly one or more of these technologies will further develop