September 26, 2004

Flying Cars

Today's NYT Magazine has a slightly-bemused article on the promise of flying cars. In several pages of article, there's not a single sentence on one of the biggest problems with the concept: energy efficiency. It's not the 1960's anymore, you know. You can't just conjure up a huge fleet of flying cars and not wonder where the fuel for it will come from. It costs energy to make something fly rather than roll -- and in a world of unstable energy sources, that can't always be a good thing.

(This is the same problem that James Fallows's book "Free Flight" had -- Americans by and large don't seem to understand the link between unrestricted personal mobility and energy usage. You can't sustain the current levels of personal mobility and overall energy usage without coming up with new energy sources (which probably won't work with something like personal airplanes) or without restricting the types of mobility.


At 3/01/2005 11:13 pm, Blogger IBONUMBER1 said...

Mister skeptic. Before you throw out a theory gain some info. Paul Moller ( has been working on a skycar for 40 years. It is close to completion. The skycar will be as fuel efficient as today's cars if not better. It will run on propane, diesel, petroleum or even recycled french fry oil. Emissions are cleaner and the skycar is safer for the environment.


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