James May Takes An Ekranoplan For A Spin

Moonlighting in this clip for his Big Ideas » 9/29/08 12:30pm 9/29/08 12:30pm program, presenter got behind the wheel of a Soviet-era . Piloting the small example of our favorite non-wheeled mode of transportation over a frozen body of water, Captain Slow stayed true-to-form, only bringing the ekranoplan up to not-quite-flying speed. Of course, the…

Ekranoplan Landings, Terrifying Concept For Reusable Space Flight

We have an occasional obsession with Soviet-era ekranoplans, the half-plane, half-hovercraft madness machines which take advantage of the ground effect, a phenomenon which provides for high lift at low altitudes. We've meandered across all manner of ekranoplan, from the massive Caspian Sea Monster » 9/05/08 3:40pm 9/05/08 3:40pm to 's vision of an…

What's The Jalopnik 24 Hours of LeMons Car?

Yeah, yeah — you knew this was coming. But I think Jalopnik would have a real shot at winning. First of all, with Murilee and Bumbeck working the pits, you know our car would running like a Swiss clock. Sure, they may sneak a nitrous system into a fake battery, but so what? As for actually driving, I'm sure between… » 10/23/07 12:00pm 10/23/07 12:00pm

You're Living In Your Own Private Ekranoplan

Okay, so it's not a missle-launching Lun or a gigantonormous Caspian Sea Monster, but it is an ekranoplan none the less. What's more it's remarkably fuel-efficient, advertised as getting around 26 mpg of diesel. And, according to the Economist it's registered as a boat! It's the Sea Falcon, the perfect vehicle for… » 6/15/07 1:30pm 6/15/07 1:30pm

What Would You Do With a Free Kuznetsov NK-12?

A high-performance turbine that powered the Tupolev Tu-95 Bear, the Tupolev Tu-114 airliner and the Antonov An-22 Anteus cargo lifter, the NK-12 was designed to run contra-rotating propellers and pumped out 14,800 seahorsepower. Now say, if Vladimir Putin were to bestow one of these fast-spinning behemoths upon you,… » 5/25/07 2:15pm 5/25/07 2:15pm

Give the People What They Want: Ekranoplans For All!

We have to say, when it comes to Soviet military hardware, we've got what most would consider more than a passing familiarity, given our childhood obsession with books on WWII-present planes, boats, tanks and other various and sundry killng machines, not to mention a pubescent summer spent devouring the Tom Clancy… » 5/24/07 7:45pm 5/24/07 7:45pm