A flying boat startup, SeaBubbles, has been testing its eco-friendly water taxis across the river Seine in Paris. They may soon be integrated into the transport network of the city.
The company was founded three years ago and is now introducing a boat that seemingly floats across the water, powered purely by electric energy. Called the ‘Bubble’, the taxi starts flying above the water when it reaches 7.5 mph reports Travel Daily Media. It offers a smooth ride by avoiding rolling waves. It charges while loading passengers on and off the dock. The vehicle is fully autonomous and can reach speeds of up to 18 knots (20.7mph).
It comes with a Fly By Wire system, electrical steering, ventilation, navigation, a self-draining cockpit. Each flying boat costs around EUR 200,000 to build.
Water taxis to help decongest land traffic
The company was founded by sailor Alain Thébault and four-time windsurfing world champion Anders Bringdal. The Bubble was created as a means to help decongest land traffic and lessen the pollution while maximising the use of the river for transportation. The interior design was inspired by the car industry and its foils were designed by engineers from the aeronautic industry.
Anders Bringdal, founder and CEO, commented on the previous testing: “It is amazing to see that the level of stability today is the same as the car. You’ll really feel that the water is not soft anymore — it’s hard — and you can jump around the boat any way you want to go.”
The startup has big plans ahead; it wants to use the world’s waterways–and not roads–to transport people from A to B. They want to do this with “zero wave, zero emissions, zero noise.” The taxis will travel at the same speed as cars. The aim is to provide these at the same cost as a regular taxi. Customers will be able to order them via an app.