REGENT, Inc. is developing a new form of sea transportation that's half-plane and half-boat. The "seaglider" will use the ground effect, a trick of physics that allows the craft to hover above the water using less energy than a normal plane. The company said its designs are as fast as conventional planes, but with the low operating costs of a boat.
Two MIT graduates, Billy Thalheimer and Mike Klinker, founded the company.
REGENT plans to have its seagliders travel at 180 miles per hour, connecting coastal regions like New York and Boston. At those speeds, the current two-hour trip between Hyannis and Nantucket would take less than ten minutes.
The company plans to produce 50-seat ferries, and has already received nearly $500 million in preorders in the first quarter of 2021. They plan to test a quarter-scale model of the aircraft by the end of the year.
The new vessels will be all-electric and zero-emission, with a range of about 200 miles using current battery technology.
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