NASA propulsion technology brings 'flying cars' closer to reality

Aug 22, 2022
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Just needs a battery the size of an articulated lorry, but still...:)

Aside from the power problems, the biggest issues with flying cars will be:

1: Infrastructure. One or two of these flying around is no issue, but lots of them will mean creating lots of air corridors that need to be kept clear. They will also be utterly useless for anything other than a carefully thought out destination and route. Fancy stopping off for a burger? better alert air traffic control ;)

Of course, they could use roads as a guide.
Anyone fancy lots of these flying over their heads?

Which brings us to:
2: People. there are enough morons on the roads. Does anyone really want them getting in an aircraft??
That brings us to autonomy - which would also mean that those carefully planned routes would be ok, as long as the wetware sits firmly in the passenger seat and has it's hands taped to the seat.
Think of roadside litter, but spread everywhere, like rain.

Also, think about traffic jams in 3D.

This isn't something that could be licensed the same as automobiles, even for "autonomous" flight control between destinations. People do too many stupid things in automobiles, already. There is even some stupid stuff being done by licensed pilots.

But, the mental model for "flying cars" in the minds of everyday folks is probably what they already do with cheap drones - which is pretty much the wild west, violating altitude restrictions, airspace boundaries, etc., not to mention the personal privacy of neighbors.

Its like a lot of things - I want one, but I don't want everybody else to have one. :eek:
I believe flying cars will need to be autopiloted unless in remote areas. There is no way a manually air traffic network could deal with everyone in flying cars.

Current air traffic in US is 45,000 flights per day.
Current automobile traffic is 1,100,000,000 trips per day.
ATC traffic would increase by a factor of 25,000.
In theory, the software currently used (and being improved) for satellite constellations and drone "swarm" performances could be adapted to flying car traffic control.

But, given how people tend to use cars, particularly their illegal uses of cars, makes me think that such software would not be able to safely handle the effects of people flying hacked flying cars outside the control network.

But, people will hack some of them if they can get their hands on them - and then use them to joy ride, rob banks, etc., once they become available. Heck, I recently read a story about a guy who stole a car and did several hit-and-runs before disabling the car and escaping on foot, only to stick around and steal an ambulance responding to one of his hit-and-run victims, then going on another spree of additional hit-and-runs with the ambulance. Not looking forward to that in 3D.
Could you imagine the horrible noise and droning at a gas station? And all the noise from overhead? So in the future, not only a dark location will be impossible to find, but a quiet location too.

I don't know about you, but the noise from a drone kills the hobby and pleasure for me. And those are electric. I'll bet those kerosene turbines scream.

And when are we gona see those flying soldiers on a real mission?

Could they really surprise a hijacked tanker? How easy would they be to hit while flying?

Could a flying soldier catch a flying Cessna? Or a flying orb?

Personally I like the idea of a flying chariot, like the WASP project. I believe this to have much more promise.

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