Bike-Powered Monorail Gets Google Grant

The Shweeb is a person-powered monorail that currently only exists as an amusement park attraction in New Zealand. But with a $1 million Google grant, the creator may yet see his dream of a commuter Shweeb system.
September 28, 2010, 2pm PDT | Tim Halbur
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The creator, Jeff Barnett, calls the Shweeb "The most efficient vehicle on Earth". It's basically like a recumbent bicycle in a tube that hangs from a track overhead. It's designed to be extremely aerodynamic, and Barnett claims you can move twice as fast as you would on a mountain bike for the same effort.

From Shweeb's press release: "As part of its due diligence, Google had the opportunity to visit Shweeb and check out demonstrations of the technology. Mr. Cossey says in order to meet Google's criteria 'To drive innovation in public transport and develop new transportation technologies that will help move more people with less energy, greater efficiency and fewer causalities', they propose to use the funding on research and development in order to build a showcase transit system in the Northern Hemisphere based on the prototype that Shweeb is already operating in Rotorua."

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Published on Tuesday, September 28, 2010 in Popular Science
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