Gallery: Lotus’ Bio-fueled IceCraft Glides Across the Antarctic


With winter well on its way and snow flurries sweeping the nation, we couldn’t contain our excitement for this sleek bio-fueled Concept Ice Vehicle. Designed and developed by Kieron Bradley and polar guide Jason de Carteret, the custom-made vehicle runs on renewable fuel and is intended to assist the Moon-Regan Trans Antarctic Expedition to scout for hidden crevasses and rough terrain. The brave explorers see the CIV as an opportunity to educate the world about the benefits of greener fuels, even in the face of sub-zero temperatures!

Should you ever find yourself forging through the Antartic, your vehicle’s fuel type might not be the first thing on your mind. But for Andrew Regan and Andrew Moon it was a natural imperative – Regan states that “If you can run bio-fuels successfully in the most harsh and extreme environment in the world, then there is no reason why you can’t use them to get to the supermarket!”

The CIV looks like a plane with curved wings and is fitted with a BMW 1150 engine that is able to run in bio-ethanol and is capable of propelling the vehicle along at 84mph. Weighing in at 360kg, the super-light craft is can be manually hauled across unforgiving terrain, and it features few moving parts to ensure that it doesn’t freeze. A special Ice Penetrating Radar enables it to scout for hidden crevasses, ensuring safe passage for the rest of the expedition.

The Moon-Rega Transantartic Expedition is consists of of the Concept Ice Vehicle and two Science Support Vehicles. They are set to cross 3,000 miles through the continent of Antartica through the Trans-Antartic Mountain Range. An essential aim of the voyage is “educate the public about the importance of Antarctica to the future of our planet”, and the team will be posting data and blog reports to their education page so that kids and others can track their findings.

+ The Concept Ice Vehicle

Via Treehugger


or your inhabitat account below


  1. AtHomewithKimVallee December 2, 2008 at 10:52 pm

    I imagine this in a future James Bond movie.

  2. fritter December 2, 2008 at 2:08 pm

    the first time they find one of those unexpected crevasses, it’s gonna flip over forwards!

    Looks like one cold ride without a full windshield…

  3. WBrooke December 2, 2008 at 11:04 am

    This is very reminiscent of the snow-planes that were used in the Canadian Prairies during the winters. In the 1920’s and 30’s the rural roads would be impassable in winter and people would get around cross-country in vehicles with skis and a rear propeller.

get the free Inhabitat newsletter

Submit this form
popular today
all time
most commented
more popular stories >
more popular stories >
more popular stories >
Federated Media Publishing - Home