Segways are electric self-balancing scooter invented by Dean Kamen with two wheels located on either side of the driver.
The name of the manufacturer's company, transferred to the electric scooter itself - “Segway” - comes from the musical term “segwe” (Italian segue [ˈsegwe], which means “follow, follow”). The segway scooter transforms its owner from an ordinary pedestrian into a more “advanced” road user, allowing him to move faster, further and with less effort.
The two wheels of the scooter are aligned. Segway automatically balances when the rider's body position changes; For this purpose, a system of indicator stabilization is used: signals from gyroscopic and liquid tilt sensors are fed to microprocessors, which generate actions that control the motors. Each wheel of the Segway is driven by its own electric motor, which responds to changes in the balance of the machine.
As the rider tilts forward, the segway begins to roll forward, and the more the tilt, the faster. When the body is tilted back, the scooter slows down, stops or rolls in reverse. In the first model, steering is carried out with the help of a rotary handle, in new models - by swinging the column left-right.
The Segway develops a speed of about 20 km / h. Weight without battery is about 40 kg, width is 60 cm, permissible load is 140 kg. The battery provides a range of up to 39 km. These figures may vary depending on the model. Compact but powerful enough (2 HP) electric motors have been specially developed for the device. Each of them is connected to its own wheel through a gearbox. The car can move not only on asphalt, but also on the ground.
The Segways, presented to the public in 2001, was developed by the inventor Dean Kamen for about ten years.
In the United States today, segways are used by postal workers, golfers, and many others. Police patrols rated speed, maneuverability and altitude in the segways; Segway police are similar to equestrian police and are used where the horse does not fit in, and the crowd does not need to be controlled (for example, at airports). Experienced Steadicam operators use segways to move quickly around the set without shaking. The concept of a “car-free city” is popular among some intellectuals in the United States who see the car as a device that is harmful to nature and society in general, and therefore the idea of moving around the city on an electric scooter was received with great enthusiasm in the media. However, the rather high cost of the device, comparable to the price of a cheap car, has led to a gradual decline in public interest in the device. Besides,
In Russia, the segway is used by the police in Naberezhnye Chelny and in Moscow (Bauman Garden, Tsaritsyno Museum-Reserve).
Segway on public roads
Segways do not fit into the modern road network: the driver of the segway on the road is in danger, and on the sidewalk, it puts pedestrians in danger. Therefore, laws restricting the use of Segways vary from country to country.
Several states in the United States have passed laws allowing segway driving on sidewalks. It is expected that the rise in gasoline prices will lead to a further increase in sales of this type of transport. Pedestrian rights organizations in the United States have also embraced the innovation without enthusiasm because of the danger of converting sidewalks into roads for vehicles, which will do nothing but harm to pedestrians.
In other countries:
Allowed: in many countries of the world, except see “prohibited”.
Equated to bicycles, primarily where there are separate cycle paths: Sweden, Saarland in Germany.
Off the sidewalk are equated to motorized carriages (and, therefore, allowed to certain categories of people): Netherlands.
Outside the sidewalk, they are considered mopeds (that is, they must be equipped with license plates and a full set of external lighting devices, drivers require a certain age and OSAGO): Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, Switzerland, Japan.
Banned pending law: Australia, UK, New Zealand.
In some countries with developed cycling infrastructures (eg Germany), laws are pending to equate segways with bicycles.
The advent of the Segway could not but offend technology lovers. Attempts have begun to make a self-balancing robot - and even full-sized segways capable of carrying a person. For example, on the site of Trevor Blackwell in a humorous vein, described "the difference between the" Rolls-Royce "and" Ford T ",":
"The engine is
the Segway: Brushless servo motors with neodymium magnets," the most powerful of such size and weight ever launched into mass production".
My scooter: Conventional DC geared motors, widely used in wheelchairs ...
Canadian Ben Gulak has built a Segway electric unicycle called Uno with two wheels very close to each other. A cross between a segway and a motorcycle, it develops a speed of up to 40 km / h and therefore can ride on public roads. From the controls only the "on / off" toggle switch, the unicycle is controlled by tilting the body.
Another device based on the same technology, but with only one wheel, is presented by the inventor from Slovenia Aleksander Polutnik. This is the Enicycle motorized unicycle. The Enicycle is equipped with an electric battery for approximately 3 hours of operation and an electric motor built into a single wheel. The balance in the saddle is controlled by a gyroscope and a suspension - a shock absorber with a spring. The control principle is exactly the same as that of the segway scooter.
On September 27, 2010, 62-year-old millionaire Jimi Heselden, the owner of the Segway hoverboards, was killed while riding a Segway. He lost control and fell off a cliff into the Wharf River.