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A Hoverboard (Also known as Hover Board) is a fictional futuristic hovering deck, resembling a skateboard without wheels or trucks. The name is a portmanteau of the words hover and skateboard. They were first introduced in the films Back to the Future Part II in 1989, and Back to the Future Part III in 1990, where Mattel made a product branded Hoverboard. Attempts to produce the experience of a Hoverboard with available technology have involved hovercraft (or air-cushion) vehicles.

Back to the Future

In the Back to the Future series, the Hoverboard model was Mattel's hover-device, invented between the years 2000 and 2015. These devices were capable of floating above any surface including water, but only the "Pitbull" type could be propelled successfully over water. Those who have seen the movie will remember the trouble that Marty had with the "Mattel" hoverboard on water, while another model—named the "Pitbull"—had no Hoverboard branding but featured two jets on the rear for forward propulsion. The original prop Hoverboard was on display at the Planet Hollywood in Beverly Hills until August 2000, when it was auctioned to a private party. Director Robert Zemeckis once joked during an interview that the Hoverboards were real, however such Hoverboards, as seen in the movies, are fictional.


There are several theories about how the Hoverboard could work. Space Magnetics (originally named Hovertech) experimented with ferrofluid force fields, attempting to ionize a column of air interacting with a magnetic fluid, forming a bubble which the board could rest on. This technology was never made to work, as the ferrofluid simply stuck to the sides of its casing when activated.

Another possible way is by use of geomagnetics, the act of repelling against the earth's magnetic field. Such as in Back to the Future: the Ride where each loading dock has a case containing a hoverboard, warning us that there is a strong magnetic field. The magnets are clearly so strong that they can reach the Earth's magnetic core that they can hover on it by the year 2015. So far there have been no significant advances toward completing a working device that can do this. It would require a large magnetic repulsion, as the Earth's magnetic field is very weak.

Real world

Several companies have drawn on currently available hovercraft technology to create Hoverboard-like products. Future Horizons produces an air-powered 5 ft long 2 ft wide board-shaped "Hoverboard". Alternatively, the Airboard is a disc shaped hovercraft a bit over 6 ft in diameter, but does not resemble the Hoverboard depicted in Back to the Future.

The Mythbusters built a successful design of hoverboard using a large surfboard and leaf blowers in 2005.

Rumors circulated in 2001 that inventor Dean Kamen's new invention, codenamed Ginger, was a transportation device resembling the Hoverboard. In reality Ginger was the Segway Human Transporter, a self-balancing dual electric servo, stand-up scooter.


Links to other great sites.

HobbyTron.com Mini Stunt Car -- Free Shipping
National Geographic Kids Shop