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ISSUE 162 - March 2011
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"My Flying Car" - Again

By David Rose, Contributing Editor
San Diego, California

Rich Strong is one of those visionary men after my own heart.

He’s an engineer, (who’s who in science and engineering) who decided fifty years ago that it was time for a flying car. His efforts are well chronicled on his website where you may follow the development of his “StrongMobile Flying Car Project”.
On the website there is a telling statement, ”The overwhelming majority of the people Rich has talked with say they want a StrongMobile.” I think we all know that what they’re really saying is that, no matter what it looks like, or how it works, they want a flying car. Don’t we all.
And now we see not only do we, the normal everyday folk who just want an easier way to get from here to there, but our ‘governments’ are way more interested then we had imagined.

If money has been the problem (let alone imagination, creativity and genius) then our worries are over. DARPA to the rescue! (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency). Yup. DARPA. That great creator of concepts is interested. DARPA is willing to loosen it’s (our) purse strings up to $54 million over the life of the program for, as they put it, a vehicle with “terrain-independent mobility.”

Now everybody is on the bandwagon. Companies everywhere are dusting off old concepts as well as developing new ideas of all kinds. My flying car is just around the corner.

DARPA’s criterion? No runway. Vertical take off and land. No special infrastructure. The thing must also have an unrefueled range of 250 nautical miles and high standard of safety. Sounds expensive. Maybe “my flying car” is a little further down the block than I thought.

I’ll keep you posted.

Read more in Clay Dillow’s article in PopSci and Jeremy Hsu’s “The Pentagon agency hopes to have a $43 million VTOL SUV in the air by 2015”.
By David Rose, Contributing Editor

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