IF YOU CAN MAKE A CAR THAT DRIVES ITSELF, WHY NOT A PERSONAL AIRCRAFT?
Tuesday was a very long day that finished after 2.00am. I actually stopped work at 8.00 pm to have supper and relax with RETURN TO LONESOME DOVE but the screenplay was so embedded in my mind that eventually I went back to work on it. I was trying to resolve a particular issue concerning how two characters meet—and eventually did so by re-writing and moving a scene around. I was very pleased because that problem had been bugging me for some time.
As I have written before, I don’t approve of working too late—we need our sleep—but sometimes the imperative is hard to resist.
Terrafugia are known as the developers of a flying car—which looks as if it just might work and be commercial. Hard to know because that has been an unrealized dream for years though my late friend, Robert Fulton, did develop a functional machine over half a century ago—and got it certified by the FAA—but it never went into commercial production. He called it an Airphibian and it is currently in the Smithsonian.
Terrafugia have now gone one further and have announced the development of the Terrafugia TF-X. This is an extraordinarily ambitious vision which the company expects will take the bones of a decade to realize.
Specifically, it involves the development of a personal hybrid electric tilt-rotor aircraft which will take off and land vertically—and which will convert to a road drivable 4 passenger car. As if that isn’t enough, the machine will—in effect—fly and drive itself.
The thing is—all the technology to make such a vehicle currently (more or less) exists but whether it can all be made to work together is another matter entirely. Consider the endless problems of the V-22 Osprey which was in development for decades.
For all that, there is a clarity about Terrafugia’s vision which suggests they just might pull it off.
Check them out at www.terrafugia.com It’s a fascinating project.