Israelis were at the forefront of cutting-edge developments in 2012, including this one:
Space age rapid transit debuts in Tel Aviv:
NASA transport pod. Photo by skyTran
It sounds like something out of a science-fiction movie, but if all goes well, within two years Israelis will be the first to try out a futuristic rapid transport system designed by NASA’s Ames Research Center in California.
The software-guided personal transport pods, designed for two, drive along a guide rail suspended from existing power lines. Magnets in the vehicle create a magnetic field around the metal coil inside the rail, causing the vehicle to lift up and glide 60 miles per hour on a cushion of air.
The system uses very little energy and potentially could be powered entirely by solar panels. The goal is to build a pilot project in Israel, and then take it worldwide.
Nicky Blackburn is editor and Israel director of Israel21c, an online news magazine about 21st-century Israel. This article has been excerpted with permission from Israel21c. To read the full piece: israel21c.org/culture/israel21cs-top-10-stories-of-2012.