Easy rider: Much-anticipated Lexus hoverboard swooshes in action (VIDEO)
“Everything I knew about skating went out the window,” said Ross McGouran, the hoverboard test rider.
Lexus has been intriguing us since June when it revealed the first video of the board, saying that it would soon make the impossible possible. They released some more teasers in July to pique interest even further.
The release date is scheduled for August 5. The board isn’t available for sale yet, but nevertheless life is imitating the art of the 1989 classic movie ‘Back to the Future II’, which features hoverboards in key scenes.
“There is no such thing as impossible, it’s just a matter of figuring out how,” said Haruhiko Tanahashi, the chief engineer of the Lexus hoverboard.
The board which weighs about 11.5kg is powered with magnets and liquid nitrogen. It’s constructed of natural bamboo and Lexus came up with SLIDE as the brand name.
“Like all Lexus design, the board's design features a balance of crafted details, modern materials and technical innovation. Inspired by classic skateboarding and Lexus design principles, the result is the perfect balance of the natural and high tech,” says Lexus on its website.
The company explained the ‘magic’ beneath the ‘impossible’ SLIDE. “The hoverboard is constructed from an insulated core, containing HTSLs (high temperature superconducting blocks). These are housed in cryostats - reservoirs of liquid nitrogen that cool the superconductors to -197°C.”
The device is then placed above a track which contains permanent magnets.
“When the board is cooled to its operating temperature the track’s magnetic flux lines are ‘pinned’ into place, maintaining the hover height of the board.”