Now, I’m told, there is a real hoverboard, and this one is not a practical joke.
This latest one was invented by a company started by husband and wife Greg Henderson and Jill Avery Henderson, owners of Arx Pax in Los Gatos.
The Hendersons’ hoverboard relies on magnetic energy, and so far is limited to levitating only an inch off the ground.
How it works
The Hendo Hoverboard relies on four disc-shaped hover engines that generate an electromagnetic field over a conductive surface (like copper sheeting), which in turn creates an opposing field within the surface. The two fields then repel each other, allowing the board to hover.
Right now, the board only works over conductive but nonferrous surfaces like copper or aluminum. Greg Henderson said he hopes to bring in some materials experts in a quest to expand the types of surfaces that his invention can travel over.
One reviewer said the Hendo Hoverboard is about as “noisy as a machine shop,” and comes with a fairly intense vibration, which is great if you want a foot massage. The prototype measures 19 by 38 inches, and weighs almost 100 pounds. It runs on eight lithium ion batteries, and can go seven minutes on a charge, carrying up to 300 pounds. The cost of the board is $10,000 – quite a steep price to pay for a seven minute ride!
Henderson, of course, hopes to leverage his hoverboard into something much bigger. What he has in mind is using the same magnetic field technology to create buildings that are more resistant to damage from earthquakes, floods, and rising water levels.
So, someday, if this new technology catches on, we may see levitating buildings, rather than hovering teenagers. While I do not want to deprive teenagers of a new means of entertainment, I can easily see the practical benefits of Henderson’s hoverboard, which can be a real boon to our civilization.
And so, as an inventor myself, I heartily applaud Greg and Jill Avery Henderson for this wonderful achievement!
Your humble servant,