Ever since hovercraft popularity peaked in early 90s R/C toys, I'd mentally buried the sheer awesomeness of the technology. Luckily, Wired reminded me with a piece depicting researchers searching for asteroids in the Arctic while floating on air and rubber.
Rather than recite the piece, which you should definitely read, I thought these hovercraft factoids were pretty neat.
• A 6-ton hovercraft has such even weight distribution that it puts no more pressure on a point of ice than a seagull standing on one leg • This means said hovercraft could cruise over 4-inch ice without cracking it • Btw, that hovercraft can cruise up to 80km/h • And its range before refuelling is 800km
Indeed, I could imagine worse scenarios than flying around the Arctic at 80km/h, rocking AC/DC through the stereo. (There was no mention of a stereo, but give a man a dream, OK?) [Wired]