Lexus has revealed the inner workings of the hoverboard it teased in June, and while it may not be the "Back to the Future"-style transportation many were hoping for, it is a cool piece of technology. The "Slide," as the company calls it, is the result of more than a year of research and testing.
It works using an extreme version of the way two magnets repulse one another if they're aligned correctly. Inside the board is a superconductor, which generates an intense magnetic field when extremely cold. Give it a supply of liquid nitrogen and it floats happily above an opposing magnet — not regular pavement or dirt, though.
Lexus put together a special skate park in Barcelona, Spain, to show off the Slide — but hidden underneath the concrete are a number of pre-laid tracks that the hoverboard will travel along. It's a bit disappointing to think that the skaters testing it out were essentially on a magnetic roller coaster and not free to zoom around the park as they wished. But chances are the board would be nearly impossible to control if the whole thing was paved with magnetic track. After all, with no friction, you can't steer.
Lexus partnered with outside technology experts to develop the prototype. Why did Lexus do it? Just to show it could, and of course to promote its brand. You won't be able to buy a Slide, but it certainly looks the part of the high-tech luxury hoverboard.