A_Presenting CarLina

Main Characteristics



B_Target : freeing cities from the automovive need








Cost of lines


A_Presenting CarLina



  • A very light, autonomous, flexible, elevated transport system, for people and freight, deployable wherever cars go.
  • Minimal footprint, allowing soft modes of transport and biodiversity restoration.
  • Silent service, even during rush hours, 24/7 operation.
  • Any kind of freight: palettes, parcells, raw materials, water etc. is transported, as well as public passengers and the disabled.
  • Access to stations is tunable to any specific configuration and needs. 

A quick rationale


  • For over a century, cities have been modeled by/for the automotive efficiency, flexibility, and benefiting from an almost free energy.
  • Cities have a set of requirements to satisfy, of which three are VITAL in the short term:
  1. Reaching any point of their territory to a small walking distance
  2. Carrying not just people, but all sorts of goods
  3. Providing such services 24/7
  • The automotive (individual & delivery) do that all, by definition of the initial statement, but are now known to themselve be a short-term (decades) deadly risk for the whole world.
  • Public transports fail on all three vital services:
  1. Too big and expensive to (often) cover more than the centre, and seldom the suburbs. Cost & flexibility concurring here.
  2. Try to take a bus or metro, carrying just a washing machine...
  3. The operating cost of bulky modes totally prevent a 24/7 service
  • Whenever PT fail to provide one of the vital mobility services, they act as an urban vacuum cleaner, sucking cars in town.


  • CarLina was designed as an environmental tool, to free cities from their automotive dependency. The unusual smal PT requirements are:
  1. Close covering of the dense habitat and up to 10km around, to walking distance
  2. Carry people + all goods necessary to the city on a weekly basis. (the very big stuff will keep needing heavy trucks). 
  3. Permanent availability
  4. Plus: sustainable, inexpensive.


Main Characteristics


  • Availability


Fully automatic network, autonomous cars/pods.

Each passenger or freight car runs point-to-point, on-demand "missions" that can be booked years to one minute before. The mission is automatically scheduled for departure and arrival to a few seconds of accuracy, regardless of the traffic.

Booking is done using average fixed or portable applications.

Wait time

A max wait time is set by the network operator, e.g. one minute, 24/7

Pods are berthing to the requested station with a typical 10s advance for embarkment. 

Unbooked missions (="taxi mode") are served by a portion of the fleet, prepositioned in accordance with the chosen max wait time.

Territorial coverage

The network provides a uniform availability of service over high to lowest density areas, and from rush hours to the small hours of the night. This is performed automatically, again acording to the max wait time requirement.

Fleet dimensioning

The network is dimensioned to accomodate peak hours, and have an inherent, extremely high capacity. As soon as the traffic calms down, vehicles automatically park.


  • Commercial speed

In town, 36km/h (10m/s).

In open terrain, up to 60km/h (1km/mn).


  • Capacity/efficiency

The network has a very large profitability range, from moving a single pod for a single person at night to tens of thousands an hour n rush hours.

Since non assigned vehicles park immediately, only keeping the minimum back-up on tracks, the network is able to maintain a consistent >90% efficiency in all conditions.

A very high capacity of over 30k passengers/hour/direction is achievable on any ntwork segment, due to the locally automated control. Such a value, irrealistic in a meshed network, is more considered as a very comfortable network design margin. 


  • Obstacle clearing

Trackways as poetically illustrated above can be deployed wherever streets/roads are.

The self-supporting structure allows to clear gaps as large as 10m as is, and 20m by installing its nominal core stiffener. As a consequence, most networks don't require any engineering works, which makes for the inexpensive aspect.

Moreover, harsh terrains, swamps, cliffsides can be equiped without significant trouble, where building a road is impossible.

The ability to fly over natural terrains with almost no interaction is a huge help to preserve biodiversity.


  • Safety

Based upon the AIDAÔ technology for advanced critical safety, the CarLina system benefits from remarkable features:


The network architecture is fully distributed, that is, no central control is needed. This insures the highest level of simplicity, performance and cost savings over its life cycle.

Network reliability is based on mobiles interacting with the rail fixed surveillance and communication sub-network. A safety analysis and mitigation process of aeronautic level is deployed.


Pods continuously self-test ("health monitoring") and manage their rendez-vous with the network workshop for first level maintenance. This is scheduled for when the replacement part is available. A field engineer proceeds in a few minutes with the replacement and validation tests. The updated pod is checked by the network with some caution, the time for the fixed and pair mobiles to confirm the proper behaviour.


Simplicity is this network's key to availability. Most basic failures known in fixed transport modes have been avoided by design. The fixed part is entirely passive, including no mechanisms at all. The mobile part is made of individual, self-controlling pods that get out of the way long before detected wearings lead to a failure. Extreme cases still exist, and have quick mitigation strategies.

Passenger safety & security

The only human activity required for operation is the mandatory audio/video security surveillance. Users can request help or advice any instant.


  • Energy

Energy consumption is to be considered in 4 modes:

  • information and control system: a few kW in a large network.
  • propulsion,  flat terrain: equivalent to an electric bike on a per passenger basis.
  • drop: a direct function of height, masquing all the previous with a ~90% efficiency.
  • on-board air conditioning: in hot countries, likely to mask the previous.




Since the sixties, a large number of proposals in the family close to CarLina, "personal rapid transit",  were tested and a few deployed, but they generally offered a limited set of services, making them no more than yet another transportation mode.

CarLina is designed as a comprehensive answer to complete urban mobility, with services encompassing taht usually provided the automotive way, like freight and technical services.


  • Complete urban transport service (that no today PT provides)

Full territorial coverage

24/7 automatic service

Passengers + goods + technical services


  • Fine grained transport mode

4-passengers only pods for maximum flexibility

Light pods allow small/light/cheap tracks

Lots of small stations to closely fit the territory


  • Elevated

Common to many PRTs, but the very lightest => most flexible and cheapest

Ability to fit wherever automobiles do, to remove the umtimate car preference 


  • Sustainable

"as much as reasonably possible", but going much farther than anything known today

Built in steel (recyclable) only, no concrete

Designed for a fully local local life cycle

B_Reducing the urban car dependency 




 Analysing the urban dependency on individual+delivery automobile
Cars flexibility as detailed above
Mismatch of public transport modes
Providing the missing set of services

The right PT mode should not be imposed, but be felt as an evidence 

  • Full territorial coverage
    • A large number of small stations, the size and reach of bus stops
    • A network grid about 500m in size (<=> not pervading all small streets)
      • or people living too far from stops will need a car
  • Permanent availability
    • 24/7 service, 1mn wait, bookable, on-demand
      • or people in uncommon hours or emergencies will need a car
  • All types of mobility provided
    • Moving the disabled, goods, parcels, palettes.. anything
    • Within each network cell, special transport and goods and the disabled are provided with some assisted charriot to/from stations, for car-less mobility.
      • or e.g. all shops in town will need their delivery vehicle
Providing more: urbanistic services
  • On congestion

Congestion is inherent to automobile: it is the inevitable production of a number of asynchronously driven mobiles, where local information (the driver's knowledge) move slower than mobiles can. Adding to this comes a second condition, as inevitable, of an anarchic (unscheduled) network.

The CarLina network is designed to be congestion-free by three characteristics:

  • Information travels thousand times faster than mobiles, no human in the loop
  • The whole network is scheduled at the millisecond, days and months in advance
  • No car is allowed in the network without its mission schedule being validated.

With this, any motion occurs as predicted, to the second.


  • On pollution
    • A CarLina pod produces 3500 km.passenger in 24h of operation, which is roughly equivalent to 25 to 50 average cars, for an expense of energy so low it is even uneasy to put a number on.
    • The distributed nature and smallness of this energy consumption makes it compatible with renewable energies.
    • The system of course have some side effect emissions, but we are working hard to try and dimension them. Like dust resuting from the friction of polyurethane wheels on a metallic surface like a mirror, and it is two to three orders of magnitude less than a car tyre on asphalt.
    • No batteries are used, with lead or lithium, only recyclable supercaps.
    • No noise is generated. A pod could pass by behind you in a street without being noticed among normal conversations.


  • On expenses
    • as said above, for a given traffic, the number of passenger pods is 25 to 50 times less than that of cars. The purchasing cost is the same, operation cost is comparatively nill, and lifetime encompasses about 2 million hours within full retrofit (small motor blocks, light seats, light doors).


  • On risks 
    • the risk level in CarLina is evaluated below that of elevators and air transport, in the range of one casualty per 10^12h of operation, significantly below air transport and some 3 orders below cars.
    • This comes from the elevated, isolated network, totally automated, synchronous predictive control mode.


  • On territorial organization
    • When a territory is served by the automotive, the idea of organizing it is pure dream. The anarchic nature of mobility (not to be confused with "liberty") make it useless and manifests itself by the famous urban sprawling.
    • From deployment of the first line in a future network, the urban community creates a strong preference for the surrounding strip of terrain. Not only for the cost of mobility, which would resist social equity, but with speed, predictability, efficiency and time saving. Hence CarLina as it is formulated, is a very powerful, yet easy to use, tool of territorial organization.




Fixed network cost

Engineering cost provided for evaluation, please contact us for network studies.


1M€/km engineering cost + terrain specifics



Support facilities

Security & surveillance: refer to lifts in buildings

Workshop: one per network, typ. 0.5M€

Parking (self-, automatic): typ 500k€, each chunk of 100 vehicles.


Fleet network

Strictly proportional to the rush hour traffic

Unit cost

Starting from 30k€ in qty of 100 pods, decreasing significantly for more as the automotive fabrication model applies.

Fleet size, and efficiency

Fleet size results from a detailed feasibility study, please contact us for use cases.

Like in other modes, the amount of vehicles depends on the peak requirement.

Unlike, the number of vehicles in operation lowers with the demand, down to the unit in extreme low demand, 24/7.

  • As a result, the fleet efficiency remains close to 100% independently from the network load.
  • A full city network doesn't operate as a set of independent lines, but in a full mesh mode, sharing all vehicles to comply with a large variety of requirements.
  • Each pod "produces" ~3500 km.passenger per day, i.e. equivalent to dozens of usual cars. 

Cost of ownership

A pod is dimensionned for 2M km before full refitting, and then again.

Maintainance is simplified to an extreme, allowing automated first-level operation.

Pods sef-test continuously and autonomously schedule their own maintenance.