Flying Saucer In Production In The US
By Megan Levy
Last Updated: 2:29am BST 04/08/2007

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    Whizzing to work in a flying saucer seems like a futuristic fantasy reminiscent of George Jetson and his space-age pals.

     
    The 'Jetsons-like' flying machine is the size of a small car and boasts a top speed of 100mph

    But that reality may be one step closer after US company Moller International embarked on a wacky 30-year quest to build a personal flying pod.

    Inspired by the 1960s cartoon series, the California-based company has just begun production on the initial six airframes of its M200G Volantor.

    Described by its creators as “the ultimate off-road vehicle", the saucer-shaped vehicle can take off and land vertically and travel at a maximum speed of 100mph.

    Powered by eight of the company’s rotary engines, the vehicle can carry two passengers and glide about three metres above the ground.

    Company founder Dr Paul Moller said the vehicle could travel over any surface, and was as easy to operate as a hovercraft.

    “You can speed over rocks, swampland, fences, or log-infested waterways with ease because you’re not limited by the surface,” he said.

    He said the vehicle's electronics kept the craft stabilized at no more than 10 feet altitude, which placed the craft close enough to the ground to obtain extra lift.

    "This lets you glide over terrain at 50 mph that would stop most other vehicles,” Dr Moller said.

    The prototype has completed over two hundred flights with and without a pilot on board.

    Air-bags surround occupants in the cockpit, while the vehicle’s on-board computer system ensures that it does not enter regulated airspace.

    Moller International has not arranged for training or licensing requirements to operate the vehicle, but is prepared to offer demonstration sessions at its California base once the vehicle is ready for market.

    The development has created a stir on the internet, with several UFO websites discussing the merits of the development.

    But with an estimated starting price tag of about £45,000 - depending on demand – only time will tell if the travelling public will cash in the family sedan for a more high-flying variety.


  •    Original article: Telegraph
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