By: Nick Gambino
There have been an endless number of inventions in the recent years labeling themselves the new “hoverboard.” These inventions range from actual devices that hover to others that don’t even leave the ground.
While the Hendo Hoverboard most resembles the hoverboards we’ve been drooling over since Back to the Future II, Zapata Racing has created a new jet-powered “flyboard” that is turning heads.
Franky Zapata posted a video back in April displaying the awesome performance of his Flyboard Air. This flying machine probably most resembles the board the Green Goblin flew in the Spider-Man films.
Using a simple throttle control in his hand Franky was able to rise up over water and fly forward at a speed of about 55 MPH. It’s hard to totally tell how much air he gets but it looks to be about 30 feet up.
The board itself is jam-packed with stabilizers and four turbo engines with each engine pushing about 250 horsepower. That kind of power works to keep the rider upright and allows the board to get up to about 100 MPH.
Zapata expressed to The Verge back in April his high expectations for the Flyboard, “My goal is to ride the clouds. Do like snowboarding in the powder, but I want to do it in a cloud. That’s my dream, and I will do my best to realize that.”
He hasn’t quite reached that goal yet but Zapata did break a Guinness World Record in May when he flew the board 7,388 feet along the coast of Sausset-les-Pins in France beating out the previous record holder, Catalin Alexandru Duru of Canada.
Now so far the Flyboard has only been tested over water but Zapata assures that it works over land though a lot more testing will need to be done before that can be considered completely safe.
In fact, the more widely available model may not resemble the current version at all. “It would be something you can sit on…it will be something that everybody can ride,” Zapata tells The Verge.” So the goal for the other one is to have something extremely small, extremely stable, and something that you can take to go and buy your bread in the morning.”
I for one am extremely excited at the possibility to fly through the air on a simple board but I think for now I’ll make sure I stay over water.
What do you think about the new Zapata Racing Flyboard Air? Sound off in the comments!
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Nick Gambino is a regular script writer and tech beat reporter for NewsWatch. He lives in Northern Virginia with his wife and daughter.