Wavejet, a low-powered motor system that fits into a traditional-sized surfboard and could change the way surfers catch waves (or at least how quickly), has exited the pipedream phase with a big launch in Orlando. Cue the purist moaning...now!
In case you aren't as into the surf scene as, say, our own Brian Lam, here's a refresher:
Wavejet is the brainchild of Mike Railey. Now CEO of Wavejet, Railey wanted a surfboard that would allow him to get out to the waves faster and more efficiently than paddling. With that in mind he created a twin lithium ion battery-powered wireless system that could be installed into the rear of most surfboards and longboards.
As you can see in this local San Diego demo video made back in June, the system is controlled via a wireless wristband dongle, and allowed surfers to shoot out to the waves at about 8 to 10 knots.
Beyond the surfing scene, Railey contends the Wavejet could find a home in lifeguard rescue boards or even kayaks (although the latter implementation kind of defeats the point of kayaking, in my opinion).
Look for the first wave of Wavejet-equipped surfboards to come from Walden Surfboards, with whom Wavejet has inked an exclusive launch partnership. Look for forum posts about how real men paddle to the waves sometime shortly after that point in time. [iStockAnalyst]