Dubai police are ushering in the Star Wars era with the unveiling of quadcopter-style hoverbikes to its fleet.
The police force of the Gulf emirate announced at the Gitex Technology Week conference that they’ll soon have officers fighting crime from the sky on electric hoverbikes capable of speeds of up to 43 miles (75 kilometres) per hour.
The Scorpion hoverbike, exhibited at the biggest technology expo in the gulf region and built by a Russian company called Hoversurf, has been likened to a ridable drone, and is capable of flying with or without a pilot. Though the bike won’t fly higher than 20 feet, the Dubai police say that the hoverbike “will be deployed as a first-responder vehicle to get into hard-to-reach places where larger vehicles can’t go”, as per Ride Apart.
Buffing up its reputation as the world’s most futuristic city, the hoverbikes knit into an array of other technological innovations, from replacing security checks with face-scanning at airports, to establishing the first major property development to accept bitcoin as payment. Not neglecting Dubai’s jetpack firefighters, 184-person capacity passenger drone, or the robot police officers, either.
Dubai’s push for improved government technology is part of a plan to improve services ahead of the city’s hosting of the Expo 2020 world fair, which is expected to attract 25 million visitors to the city. And it’s not just all cyberpunk related–Dubai’s state energy utility recently awarded a $3.9 billion contract to build and run a 700 megawatt solar power plant, featuring a 260-meter (850-foot) tower receiving focused sunlight, the world’s tallest such tower.