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Dublin: 9 °C Wednesday 20 November, 2019

This is the closest thing you're going to get to a real-life hoverboard

The Arcaboard can hover a foot off the ground, but there are a few caveats.

THERE ARE “HOVERBOARDS” — the rolling (and sometimes exploding) ones banned by Amazon— and then there are hoverboards, the futuristic hovering skateboard-like vehicles we’ve dreamt about owning since “Back to the Future Part 2.”

The $19,000 (€17,495) Arcaboard appears to be the latter.

We’ve seen plenty of companies attempt to build a hoverboard. Lexus actually built a functioning one earlier this year, but it only worked in a custom skatepark with magnets lining the track. A company called Hendo Hoverboard also created a hovering vehicle, but it also needs special tracks to work.

The Arcaboard might be the closest thing we’ve seen to a real hoverboard, but it’s not without its drawbacks.

Built by ARCA Space Corporation, a private aerospace company in New Mexico that builds rockets and unmanned aircrafts, the Arcaboard can hover one foot off the ground on any surface.

built-by-arca-space-corporation-a-private-aerospace-company-in-new-mexico-that-builds-rockets-and-unmanned-aircrafts-the-arcaboard-can-hover-one-foot-off-the-ground-on-any-surface Source: Business Insider

It’s very cool and futuristic, but it’s not without its problems.

its-very-cool-and-futuristic-but-its-not-without-its-problems Source: ARCA Space Corporation

First of all, the Arcaboard can fly for a total of six minutes – less if you weigh over 240 pounds (about three minutes) – so it won’t be your main mode of transportation anytime soon. At least it only takes 35 minutes to recharge.

first-of-all-the-arcaboard-can-fly-for-a-total-of-six-minutes--less-if-you-weigh-over-240-pounds-about-3-minutes--so-it-wont-be-your-main-mode-of-transportation-anytime-soon-at-least-it-only-takes-35-minutes-to-recharge Source: ARCA Space Corporation

To achieve its maximum speed of 20.1 km/h, the Arcaboard uses 36 battery-powered electric fans, motor controllers and proximity sensors for locomotion.

to-achieve-its-maximum-speed-of-125-mph-the-arcaboard-uses-36-battery-powered-electric-fans-motor-controllers-and-proximity-sensors-for-locomotion Source: ARCA Space Corporation

But there is a downside to that. With so many motors and fans, the Arcaboard is noticeably loud. It produces about 92 decibels - on an acoustic scale, it’s louder than a Boeing jet taking off the runway but softer than a rock concert (if that is at all reassuring).

hoverboard Source: ARCA Space Corporation

According to the National Institute on Deafness, noise-induced hearing loss can be caused by “long or repeated exposure to sounds at or above 85 decibels.” So don’t operate your Arcaboard for too long without protecting your ears.

decibels levels Source: NIDCD

On the plus side, you don’t need worry about this product exploding like those other “hoverboards.” The company’s website says Arcaboard’s batteries, which are used for ARCA’s aerospace vehicles, have “never had a single problem with overheating during ten years [of] usage.”

hoverboard 2 Source: ARCA Space Corporation

Also nice: You can use your smartphone to help direct your Arcaboard, which is useful in case you’re having trouble steering or directing on your own.

also-nice-you-can-use-your-smartphone-to-help-direct-your-arcaboard-which-is-useful-in-case-youre-having-trouble-steering-or-directing-on-your-own Source: ARCA Space Corporation

The Arcaboard will be available for purchase starting in April 2016. The company plans on selling the hoverboard in three colors: green, blue, and beige.

the-arcaboard-will-be-available-for-purchase-starting-in-april-2016-the-company-plans-on-selling-the-hoverboard-in-three-colors-green-blue-and-beige Source: ARCA Space Corporation

You can watch ARCA’s video introducing the Arcaboard below.


Read: Struggling to wake up in the morning? These alarm apps with a twist may help >

Read: A priest got in trouble for riding his hoverboard at Christmas Mass >

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