Saturday, June 16, 2007

Waiting for the PRT wave, part II

An interesting Wired article on future engines - it seems that a surprising amount is happening here in the UK.

I've written before about my hunch that Personal Rapid Transport is a technology that may yet transform our worlds - my interest in this article is that some of the future engine technologies mentioned, such as the PMLFlightlink Wheelmotors in Hampshire, would appear to be highly suitable for PRT components such as ATS Ltd's Pod.

I suppose we also have to consider the possibility that electronic cars may be so successful that they kill the demand for PRT, thus leaving us with a second-best solution. Actually I could live with that, if the roads really were cleaned up and quietened down. But I don't think I will have to. Big developments like town centres, out-of-town shopping malls, airports and campuses are built using scarce resources, for specific purposes. Wasting money and space on road surface and parking has only ever been the price paid for efficient and flexible access. If and when a better alternative can be demonstrated to exist, then I believe it will be adopted - and rapidly.