Hoverboard: The Next Evolution in Personal Electric Mobility
Hoverboard: The Next Evolution in Personal Electric Mobility
Ride the experience of surfing streets on our one-wheeled, gyro-stabilized personal electric vehicle that feels like you're hovering
Ride the experience of surfing streets on our one-wheeled, gyro-stabilized personal electric vehicle that feels like you're hovering Read more
About this project
Experience The Feeling of Flight.
The Hoverboard is the most thrilling imaginable form of personal transportation. Our unique self-balancing system uses ground contacting sonar to float the rider over every contour.
What Makes The Hoverboard So Awesome?
The Hoverboard is a Tesla, compressed down to scooter-size. We’ve designed the components that deliver the MOST POWER of any comparable PEV (Personal Electric Vehicle), unprecedented Range/Weight, Power/Weight and Power/Volume ratios.
Thoughts from a One Wheel owner
Tilt forward to accelerate, tilt back to brake or go the other way - simple as that.
The Drive Unit
At the center of the Hoverboard is the “Drive Unit”. This removable module that contains the Direct-Drive, Industrial Class BLDC (Brushless Direct-Current) servomotor, bearings and position sensors. The Drive Unit is where most of the manufactured cost are concentrated. The drive unit is “Smart”, with a small micro-controller embedded to store all of it’s unique characteristics and present those to the Motor Control Unit. With this arrangement, Drive Units are simply interchangeable without any “tuning” or other calibration necessary – just swap and go. It is possible that in the future, there will be alternative Drive Units with different power levels or operating characteristics.
The Hoverboard is designed to be personalized. Custom program all aspects of your Hoverboard Experience, less only those directly related to safety.
If your Hoverboard gets lost or stolen, report it to us and we can make sure no thief will benefit.
Just because you were bold enough to get the first run doesn’t mean your Hoverboard will be obsolete when the next generation comes out. We designed the Hoverboard to be modular so you can EASILY upgrade parts on your own and always keep it current.
We designed the Hoverboard so you can take apart the components and put them back easily. You don’t have to send it back to replace the basics like tires or new LCD screen. Just order the part and install it with a screwdriver. Gash your board? No problem, just buy a new shell and switch it out yourself.
Not only can you maintain your own Hoverboard - you can improve it! Whether it is by custom programming, or installing new and improved batteries - YOU ARE IN CONTROL.
Mobile App Dashboard
Your Smartphone is your window into the Hoverboard, and the app is designed to fully access the countless features the Hoverboard offers. These are just some of the things you can control with the App:
- Activate your Hoverboard
- Check charge level and battery health
- Set Speed Limit (for each setup user)
- Lock your Hoverboard
- Log riding data, max-speed, avg-speed, distance traveled, etc.
- Protect your Hoverboard from theft
- Customize the lighting
- Customize the LED Bar Graphs
- Play Music and customize sound
The World Is A Buzz!
Fellow Inventors, Innovators, and Visionaries... We Need Your Help.
We've poured our hearts and souls into making the Hoverboard everything it can possibly be. To do that, virtually every metal and plastic component in the design is FULLY-CUSTOM. That means the tooling burden on us is enormous. We have dozens of molds and dies to pay for before we will get the manufactured unit-cost to below our sales price. All-up, the cost will be about $1M. If the community is passionate enough about the Hoverboard to meet us half-way, we are ready to match that and START STAMPING THESE THINGS OUT!
Is there a market for the TESLA of Personal Electric Vehicles? Please buy one right now, right here, and shout YES!
Who We Are: Hoverboard Technologies
Making personal transportation awesome is just another day at the office. Our hope is that the Hoverboard inspires a personal electric vehicle movement and that the technology we've developed adds to the evolution of green energy.
The Hoverboard is the brainchild of Robert Bigler: a designer and an engineer with a passion for automation and electric vehicles. With a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering, he taught himself electronics and computer programming to develop extremely compact and flexible motion-control and automation products. After growing his first company Animatics to be a global force among multi-billion-dollar competitors, Robert sold it and created Equilia, a cutting-edge incubator in the Silicon Valley.
Detailed Tech Specs
The Drive unit slides up into the “Deck” from the bottom and attaches to the Deck with four screws. Each of the four attach points are actually Load Cells. These load cells weigh the rider to both determine whether the rider is actually on the board or not, as well as offer a measure of the rider’s weight for possible use in the future either by us to modify the tuning characteristics to match the rider’s weight, or for the user to access for their own programming.
On each side of the Drive unit, inside the deck, are two compartments. One holds the Motor Control Unit, and the other holds the Onboard Charger. The Motor Control unit is an Industrial Class, full Four-Quadrant BLDC Motor control and drive with more than 200 Amps of peak power capability. It is over-designed to future-proof itself against potential Drive Unit options in years to come where such options might offer even greater power.
The Onboard Charger is a very unique design that can take any voltage between 12 and 48 VDC. Its charging port has a custom connector presenting 40Amp power pins for “Super Charging”, as well as CAN (Control Area Network) signals to communicate to the outside power supply in such circumstances. When power is detected at the charging port, the Onboard Charger will send a CAN message to ask the outside power source how much current can be drawn.
If it is a Hoverboard Technologies power source, then the Onboard Charger will get an answer and then draw that much current to maximize the charging rate. If it does not get an answer, then it will draw a default amount of current that can then be increased or decreased with the PDA/Phone App. Care must be taken not to tell the Hoverboard to draw more power than the outside power supply can offer.
The limit of the onboard charger to regulate power per the needs of the onboard Lithium-Ion batteries is 10 Amps. Supercharging (well above 10A) is accomplished by the Hoverboard bypassing its internal regulation circuits and hard-connecting the charger port pins to an external, Hoverboard-Proprietary, Supercharger. The Onboard Charger sends the external Supercharger constant instructions, in real-time, to regulate current as necessary to safely Supercharge the batteries at the fastest possible rate. Hoverboard Technologies intends to disseminate Hoverboard Superchargers in densely populated suburban areas. Regular charging is already so fast, it makes little sense to Supercharge at home, although the Supercharger will certainly be available to anyone.
The majority of the Hoverboard Deck is occupied by two, identical battery packs. While the packs are removable and replaceable, this entails taking the Hoverboard apart and is not something that would be done in the field to restore charge. They are not “quick-release”. Supercharging and/or charging with an additional pack while riding are the answers to extending range.
Each pack is “Smart”, and has a controller to manage and balance the charging, aka a “BMS” or “Battery Management System”. Each pack has digital memory and “black-box” type recording, preserving data relating to its entire usage history and state-of-health. Each individual battery is temperature-monitored, even though the Hoverboard already uses the safest cells available on the market. Battery technology is improving by double-digit percentages every year, so the Hoverboard’s battery packs and their connectivity are designed to render them easily and seamlessly upgraded in the future.Each battery pack surrounds a small cavity in each end of the board that houses the ground-sensing Sonar Modules.
The Sonar Modules ping the ground to get an accurate measure if the distance between each end of the Hoverboard and the ground below. The ends of the Hoverboard are tipped-up to keep sure-footing as the Sonar Modules causes it to tip as necessary to seek a level that is parallel to even the sloped surface. The Sonar Modules also warn the Hoverboard of small, but abrupt obstacles such that when the Hoverboard calculates these detected obstacles to be reaching the wheel, the appropriate burst of power is already prepared for deployment, minimizing “lurch” and keeping the riding experience as pure as possible.
At the tips of the Hoverboard reside what we call the “User Modules”. These are modules that house and control most interaction with the User. With four screws, they can drop out the bottom of the deck, without the deck-halves been separated, for easy-access as necessary. The User Modules contain the LCD Bar-Graph displays, Bluetooth communications channels, head-and-tail lighting, perimeter lighting, speakers and buttons. User status or warnings can be broadcast through the speakers, but they can also be used to play music, making the Hoverboard also perform as a mini-boom-box. Even we don’t know what the buttons are for. We just put them there. If you personalize your Hoverboard with custom programming in our “Hover Script”, they are available to you for User-Input.
Risks and challenges
By looking at the prototypes and their performance it can be seen that the hardware and mission-critical software is finished. What is not so obvious is that all the components are not only functionally designed, but they are already designed for manufacture with our extensive combined experience, and ready to tool.
Still, we are currently iterating the design one last time to maximize the modularity and user-serviceability. This is a challenge, but we feel these will be empowering features that are very unique to the Hoverboard and valued by our owner/riders.
While we also have extensive combined experience in product safety testing and certification, that is one exercise that can inject unpredictable delay in the process of taking a product to market. We have applied all that we know to ensure the certification process will go smoothly, but one can never say for sure there won’t be any delays.
There are some exotic components in the Hoverboard, like the custom motor and large ring-bearings that have very long lead-times. The great thing about the Kickstarter venue, however, is that it gives us a preview of how to scale our deliveries so we have the runway to make our purchases of these components very early and in appropriate numbers.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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