The technology to harvest excess atmospheric humidity here on Earth exists in a variety of small-form ideas such as the Fontus self-filling water bottle. But to battle something as large-scale as California’s drought problem we’d need industrial-strength moisture vaporators like the ones from Owen Lars’ moisture farm on Tatooine. Comparatively, Star Wars-type technology is already employed in the motorcycle industry, just not to the same level. Although we’re far behind the technology of that far away, long ago galaxy, we’re gaining ground fast. Let’s take a look.
Pilots from the Empire, Rebel Alliance, and the New Republic all train for flight by using a Holosimulator. The Holosimulator presents take-offs, landings and flight combat in nearly 100% realism by utilising computers, holograms, and inertial compensators. The Rebels certainly couldn’t afford to be crashing X-wings, and neither can motorcyclists afford to be crashing bikes, for both physical and financial reasons (note the Personal Energy Shield surrounding the pilot, more on that later).
Flight simulators exist now, but not to the same level of sophistication as those in the movie. Motorcycle simulators also exist, but to an even lesser level of sophistication. If we develop a similar level of simulation and apply it to training motorcyclists as well as motorists – providing all the good and bad scenario stimulation of riding/driving without the risk – we’d be a planet of better riders/drivers.
A metal alloy comprised of real and fictional components, and capable of withstanding all climates from the heat of Mustafar to the cold of Hoth, Durasteel is the choice of protection from Darth Vader to Boba Fett. Obviously this could be useful in protecting motorcyclists during a crash. Durasteel is also extremely thin, light and invincibly strong, making it a good replacement for aluminum and other metals in motorcycle components.
8. Navigation Computer
Containing all the galactic coordinates for all star systems in the known galaxy, Navigation Computers from Star Wars are capable of calculating the quickest and safest route to an exact destination. Modern GPS devices are good, but until one can calculate a route avoiding all traffic congestion, and road construction, and stitch together the curviest roads possible into a seamless trip to a chosen destination, TomTom, Garmin, et al. have work to do.
7. Sensor Array
“Don’t Worry. With the Falcon’s sensors, it’s like seeing the future. You’ll know where each Imperial Fighter is headed before the TIE pilots have made a move.”
― Lando Calrissian
Replace Imperial Fighter with deer, fox, dog or any other mobile impediment, and it’s easy to see why Sensor Arrays like the ones in Star Wars would be so useful to motorcyclists. Starship Sensor Arrays are capable of detecting approaching ships or incoming projectiles, obstacles and other interstellar phenomena. We’re seeing this type of technology in luxury automobiles, but it’ll be a while before it’s adapted and applied to two-wheelers.
6. Personal Energy Shield
According to Wookieepedia, “A personal energy shield was a defensive technology that projected a field of energy that protected the user from blaster fire, the elements, or other hazards. Most were small enough to be worn on a belt or arm, or were designed to be held much like a traditional physical shield.”
Our interest here is not so much blaster fire as it is other hazards and the elements. We’re thinking the technology could be switched on manually or, in a way similar to Dainese’s D-Air system, work in conjunction with the bike’s Sensor Array and be employed when an impending crash or obstacle is detected. Of course, staying dry in the rain and keeping warm in the cold would be some awesome side benefits.
5. Bacta Tank
Road rash would pretty much be a thing of the past with a Bacta Tank. Luke got clobbered by a Wampa, then wandered aimlessly in the minus-60-degree Hoth weather, but a little while in one of these and he was good as new. If your Sensor Array, Personal Energy Shield and Durasteel Armor fail to save you, a Bacta Tank and its powerful healing agents hopefully will.
In the Star Wars world, the term Lightspeed is slang for a starship traveling through hyperspace. Turns out, traveling through hyperspace with a class 1.0 hyperdrive motivator is 100,000 times faster than the speed of light, which stands to reason why Navigation Computers are so important. While motorcycles certainly don’t need that type of speed (a race would be nothing more than bikes at the start and finish lines with not even a blur in between), we’re always welcoming performance increases, and if we could whittle commute times down to a nanosecond, that’d be great!
3. Auto-Navigating Skylanes
Auto-Navigating Sklanes like the one seen on Coruscant (think of a global Los Angeles) would be a welcome and necessary technology. With Earth’s global population predicted to reach 9 billion by mid-century, and who knows how many by the time we reach Star Wars technology levels, we’ll certainly need auto-navigating skylanes to keep that much traffic from crashing into one another. Much like the mundaneness of navigating modern freeways, we’d rather kick back, relax and let a computer do the work. Auto-Navigating Skylanes would be infinitely more safe for motorcyclists as they allow motorists to text one another without risking the lives of everyone around them.
2. Speeder Bikes
Nope, sorry, Speeder Bikes don’t fill the #1 slot in this Top 10, you’ll see why in a moment. Like most current motorcycles, Speeder Bikes, specifically the 74-Z, emphasize speed (in excess of 300 mph) and maneuverability. Hovering up to 82 feet above terra firma, you’re not gonna get a knee down, but at least with the forward rotating blaster cannon, you can blow shit up. The 74-Z was also equipped with terrain-following sensors linked to a heads-up display which makes navigating rough terrain a breeze. So, why did so many Stormtroopers keep running into trees? Obviously a result of too little Holosimulator time.
We’re nowhere close to having this kind of technology, but if you’re chomping at the bit and have upwards of $100k burning a hole in your pocket you can pre-order The Hoverbike, the world’s first flying motorcycle, today.
1. Weather Control
Oh God, yes, give us this technology above all others! We here in California are so spoiled when it comes to weather. There’s hardly, if ever – even in normal, non-drought years – a concern about rain. And rarely does it get too hot or cold to be health threatening. For everywhere else, motorcyclists just deal with it. Yes, weather conditions sometimes add to the adventure of motorcycling. But, come on, you have to admit that, if like Coruscant, where they control weather allowing one rainstorm per month, that’d be pretty sweet. It sure would allow for easier track day and trip planning. Even if you wanted to ride in the rain, you’d know the exact day on which to do it!