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Tuesday 20th March 2018

‘Flying River Taxi’ Has Tests in Paris


7Dnews London

Wed, 18 Sep 2019 13:19 GMT

Clean city transportation through the air is getting closer, with a “flying” electric river taxi being put through tests in Paris this week, AFP reported.

The flying taxi, named "Sea Bubble", is expected to be in service by next spring.

The white aerodynamic craft skimmed over the River Seine in the French capital 50 cm above the water at speeds of up to 30 km/hour (17m/hour).

The Sea Bubble can make the journey from the Eiffel Tower in the west to Notre-Dame cathedral in just a few minutes.

The taxi, which looks similar to the DeLorean Car in the 1980s science fiction movie ‘Back to the Future’, was invented by French yachtsman Alain Thébault. 

The Bubble, which makes no noise or waves and emits no carbon dioxide, won the approval of French transport officials wanting to endow the capital with new, clean transportation in their preparations for the 2024 Olympic Games in Paris.

Similar to a hydrofoil, the taxi, which is powered by electric batteries and can hold up to four passengers, was first tested on the Seine in June 2017, with Mayor Anne Hidalgo taking a tour.

The craft’s operators said they have requests for the Bubble from cities including Geneva, Miami and Saint-Tropez

Sea Bubble’s CEO Anders Bringdal said that the aim is to put the Seine back at the centre of mobility in the greater Paris area while respecting the zero noise, zero waves, zero CO2 emissions principle.

"All the signals seem to be turning green for the start of commercial operations of our Bubble Taxis in the first three months of 2020," he said.