We may not have lightsabers yet, but at least one iconic element from the Star Wars universe is becoming a reality. Aerofex, a California aeronautics company, has developed the world’s first flying bike (or speeder bike), which uses a powerful fan system and special control scheme that allows anyone to drive it without training. Check out the speeder bike in action…
Aerospace engineer and Aerofex founder Mark De Roche and his team developed the flying bike. They tested them in the Mojave Desert and pushed their machines to reach speeds of 30mph and hit heights of up to 15 feet.
The bike uses the pilot’s natural sense of balance to maneuver it. As De Roche explains, the flying bike “captures the translations between the two in three axis (pitch, roll and yaw), and activates the aerodynamic controls required to counter the movement — which lines the vehicle back up with the pilot.” The pilot just needs to balance the bike as if they were riding a regular bicycle or motorbike.
The aeronautics company has no plans to sell the flying bike to the general public but rather they are making a play to sell them to the U.S. military. Aerofex believes the flying bikes can be used for transporting heavy military machinery and to navigate through rough terrain. They also believe it can get through tight areas where helicopters cannot.
We will all be safe as long as these flying bikes don’t fall into evil Galactic Empire’s hands. But if they do, they’ll make for an exciting chase on the second moon of Endor.