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Clean Transport

Published on July 11th, 2016 | by James Ayre


Miral & skyTran Partnering For Project On Abu Dhabi’s Yas Island

July 11th, 2016 by  

A memorandum of understanding has been signed between Miral and the NASA Space Act Company skyTran that will see the two work to develop an “innovative next-generation personal rapid transit system for the first time in the Middle East,” according to a recent press release.


To be more specific, the memorandum of understanding will see the two firms work to study and implement the skyTran personal rapid transit (PRT) system on Yas Island in Abu Dhabi.

To provide some background here, skyTran is a NASA Space Act Company that’s headquartered out of the NASA Research Park near Mountain View, California. The firm’s computer-controlled, “2-person ‘jet-like’ vehicles employ unique, state-of-the-art, skyTran Magnetic Levitation (STMLTM) technology instead of wheels. The patented, high-speed, low-cost, elevated PRT system, built at NASA Ames Research Center will have cars zipping above traffic from one destination to another in a safe, timely, and energy efficient manner across the Island,” according to the press release. “The project aims to connect the current and future destinations on Yas Island and eventually link it to Abu Dhabi International Airport.”

skytran-vehicle-14-HR yas-island-skytran-15-HR

The CEO of Miral, Mohamed Abdulla Al Zaabi, commented: “Innovation remains at the heart of what we do on Yas Island. While we continue to build world-class destinations and expand Yas Island, it is imperative that we are able to implement an urban transportation solution which is not only energy efficient but also adds another level of excitement to our visitors’ experiences. With skyTran, we have a partner who not only shares our vision for innovation in Abu Dhabi, but are developing a service which will transform the Yas Island experience, and grow our appeal to the millions of residents and tourists who visit us from the UAE and across the world.”


The CEO of skyTran, Jerry Sanders, commented: “skyTran truly is a smart transportation solution for smart cities and we are proud to be able to bring this path-breaking technology to the Middle East for the first time. With our access to NASA’s cutting-edge technology and expertise, we are able to introduce a solution on Yas Island which paves the way for Abu Dhabi to define the Middle East’s innovative mode of transport for the future.”

For those unfamiliar with Yas Island, it’s essentially a tourist spot — with over 25 million visitors each year. Attractions include the Yas Marina Formula 1 circuit, Ferrari World Abu Dhabi, and Yas Waterworld, amongst other things. 


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About the Author

James Ayre's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy.

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