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  • Imagine an entire network of flying cars

  • zooming around at 2,000 meters (6,561 feet) above our congested city streets.

  • Your morning commute would be a lot different up there:

  • you could travel at higher speeds,

  • and you could reach almost any remote destination.

  • This is WHAT IF,

  • and here's what would happen if we had flying cars.

  • The idea of flying cars has been around for almost as long as the car has.

  • And with most people imagining that the future will include some form of flying vehicle,

  • we seem to have accepted that flying cars will eventually become reality.

  • But do we need them?

  • The companies that are currently producing them would say yes,

  • obviously, because they'd be much more environmentally friendly

  • than our current gas-guzzling automobiles.

  • But other scientists say that,

  • we'd just be replacing one environmental catastrophe with another.

  • Now, before we get too carried away with the environmental impacts of flying cars,

  • let's figure out if it's even possible to fill our skies with them.

  • Several companies have already produced working models,

  • so we know that it's physically possible,

  • but making them a regular part of our society would be much more complicated.

  • For starters, there's the question of who'd be driving them:

  • Would it be us, or some kind of artificial intelligence?

  • According to Aviation Safety magazine,

  • human error is the cause of 90 percent of noncommercial plane accidents.

  • This is one of the reasons why many experts think that

  • flying cars would need to be autonomous.

  • In other words, humans would not drive them.

  • Studies also show that accidents are much more likely when

  • humans are behind the wheel of the ordinary cars we have now.

  • And remember that up in the air, accidents would be a lot more destructive.

  • Not only would there be high speed collisions,

  • but there would be the collateral damage of the wrecks falling to the ground

  • or crashing into surrounding buildings.

  • Everyday normal car issues that we experience on the ground

  • would also be a lot more problematic in the air.

  • If your engine breaks down, or you happen to run out of gas completely,

  • you can still pull over to the side of the road,

  • you just have to plummet for 2,000 meters (6561.68 feet) before you crash there.

  • Bad weather would also become a much bigger problem on your airborne journeys,

  • as conditions like strong winds could throw your flying car off course,

  • and possibly into a tailspin.

  • Maybe there would have to be rules in place for

  • when a flying vehicle could and could not be used because of Mother Nature.

  • And we'd need police up there to enforce those rules,

  • along with other laws regarding speed and allowed elevation heights.

  • But how would a cop pull someone over in mid-air?

  • Ok, so clearly there would be a lot of work to do to integrate flying cars into our society,

  • but it'd all be for the good of the environment, right?

  • It is estimated that an electric flying vehicle

  • could be 35 percent more energy efficient

  • over a 100 km (62 mile) trip when compared to a gas-powered car.

  • But as impressive as this is,

  • it doesn't top what an electric vehicle is currently capable of achieving.

  • On top of that, although we'd be eliminating the problematic

  • gasolines needed for conventional cars,

  • mining the natural elements required for our flying cars' rechargeable batteries

  • would be just about as bad.

  • So maybe flying cars will never be convenient enough for the average commuter to rely on,

  • but that doesn't mean we should stop exploring the technology.

  • Maybe the ideas behind flying cars

  • could lead to bigger and better advancements down the road,

  • but that's a topic for another WHAT IF.

Imagine an entire network of flying cars

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A2 初級

もし空飛ぶ車があったら? (What If We Had Flying Cars?)

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    林宜悉 に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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