Is the flying car of you dreams coming any soon?
Everyone is trying to build it, even google is.
What is really the problem?
Who will fly?
The real problem is not the car itself, but how would we fly it. There are too may road accidents already, and to fly
passenger planes in such low traffic environment we need a huge team of air traffic controllers, the traffic is too low if we compare it to a situation where every one of the passengers had his own private plane.
Now imagine a situation where we all have private planes and we fly them, this is of course not possible. This situation is similar to a flying car, we can say we would develop air highways and pre-designed paths to take our car, but that would require much more work than building a flying car, also we would assume that no one would could lose it and fly off the road, causing a much much more dangerous situation than road accidents, in the air there will be no mistake, a little will cost your life.
The problem is also the human mind, which has limited capabilities and makes an error every now and then, of course the elevation of the car will not be controlled by humans themselves? No, absolutely not, but they would still have to make a decision to fly over a path, and since there are no road like structures, there is no direction, you can move anywhere you want, this will cause a chaos.
Computers and the car web
Now, coming to the solution of these problems, you might have guessed this is simple, “we let the car fly itself” in other words let the computer fly it, or at least take care of some complex functions such as altitude. Yes, we have to do that, and that is the primary reason for the delay of such a vehicle. We do not have such a complex system which could do it, the most successful is the self-driving google car, which is still under tests although it covered 1.5million miles, was started in 2009, it is still not ready for production. Ok, it might be possible we get it in a few years, but it would still not be equipped to handle another dimension, if it flies it would have to have a much more complex artificial intelligence and much more computing capability, which is really important milestone.
Assuming that all these are done, we would also need something that will be more difficult to build, ‘a network over which they communicate’, if computers are driving the cars, we cannot just rely on their intelligence and let it fly us without a definitive system that ensures our safety. If the cars communicate or follow a path made in air by GPS like systems, we would require someone to build it. It might not be difficult but would require an initiative that require too many resources, its like redesigning a cities roadways and scaling it up to the world.
Government Policies and Laws for traffic
Since we can now fly, nothing is really as far as it once was, the restrictions like barricades are much difficult to build in air, all this can cause a difficult situation to control, government institutions will have to make laws restricting access to certain areas, using radars would require too much work and manpower, while restricting access by lasers or walls will be too expensive.
Traffic rules in this case will be more important than they are now. Now since the traffic accident is lethal for the people involved in it and a few others near it or below it, we can assume a much more police force, high tech equipment and what not.
Although these are not that significant, we can really think about some problems that are hard to get through.
Fuel consumption, we do not have a fuel right now that would be economical to fly it. We do not have the possible technology to fly it. Computers aren’t just so intelligent.
Is it even possible? [poll id=”3″]
Yes, absolutely, it might be done, just not soon enough.
When will we see them?
If a better system is never built, we might see them, but first we will see self-driving cars, a lot of self-driving cars connected to a internet of things, where each have their own identity. We would see a decline in accidents as cars would not have human error, highways which are faster and completely designed in new ways. New fuel or significantly more efficient engines, new fuels, less pollution and new laws for self-driving cars. Might be possible we don’t have traffic signals or other traffic indicators.
When you see all these, we are ready for the flying car too.