The Bubble Taxi, designed in France by SeaBubbles, is a small, fast and very efficient electric hydrofoil craft that can carry up to 5 passengers (including the pilot) with a maximum speed of 25 km/h, producing no waves, no noise and no emission. For more information see the IDTechEx report on Electric and Hybrid Boats and Ships 2019-2029.
The Bubble Taxi sails from 0 to 13 knots. Between 0 and 6 knots, it is in Archimedean mode (hull touching the water). Between 7 knots and 13 knots, the Bubble changes into Foiling mode (only foils are touching the water), lifts off the water and "flies" about 40cm above the water. It can be used in different environments including lakes, rivers and open seas although the navigability of the waterways (depth, maximum wave height, current) needs to be investigated before operating.
To keep battery performance at a maximum, SeaBubbles recommend maintaining a charging level of at least 20%. A full recharge depends on the installed charging solution. SeaBubbles offers different solutions for different needs.
The Bubble Taxi is equipped with the a Fly-By-Wire system. Also used in the aviation industry, this technology constantly measures the position of the boat above the water. It sends this information to the flaps (that are mounted on the foils) to balance the boat and keep it stable. For the foils, Seabubble chose carbon fiber, which is the best compromise between lightness and resistance.
The Bubble Taxi has scissor-doors to optimize embarking & disembarking, as well as to save parking spaces.
The Bubble Taxi was recently presented in Miami and SeaBubbles hopes to expand to other countries. There are few private buyers in the United States, and the company is also preparing to start production for private and business customers in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Rotterdam and Amsterdam according to reports.
Source and images: SeaBubbles
Learn more at the next leading event on the topic: Business and Technology Insight Forums - Tokyo, September 2019 on 18 - 19 Sep 2019 at Tokyo, Japan hosted by IDTechEx.