Slideshow

Top high-tech rollercoasters

These rollercoasters are some of the most hi-tech and stomach-churning out there.

  • These Rollercoaster Pack a Tech Punch



    Behind the vertical dives and loop de loops of [[xref:http://www.pcworld.com/article/169661/top_tech_rollercoasters.html|today's top tech rollercoasters are cutting-edge computer systems|Top Tech Rollercoasters]] that thrill riders and keep them safe. The newest rides use sensors, Ethernet control systems, wired and wireless networks as well as digital audio and video. Here's our list of the nation's top tech rollercoasters and rides.

    [[xref:http://www.networkworld.com/news/2009/080309-tech-roller-coasters.html|Read the related story.|Top tech roller coasters]]
  • Rollercoaster: Top Thrill Dragster



    Where: Cedar Point Amusement Park

    When opened: 2003

    Top speed: 120 mph

    Top height: 420 feet

    High-tech features: Sensors line 2,800-foot track and send real-time data to a ControlNet network. Separate control and safety Programmable Logic Controllers.
  • Rollercoaster: Manta



    Where: Sea World Orlando

    When opened: 2009

    Top speed: 56 mph

    Top height: 140 feet

    High-tech features: Sensors along 3,359-foot track and on the trains communicate with Programmable Logic Controllers. Computerized special effects simulate the coaster hitting water.
  • Rollercoaster: SheiKra



    Where: Busch Gardens Tampa Bay

    When opened: 2005 (redesigned in 2007)

    Top speed: 70 mph

    Top height: 200 feet

    High-tech features: Five trains on the track. Sensors line 2,950-foot track, trains and seats and communicate via an Ethernet network to Programmable Logic Controllers.
  • Rollercoaster: Hollywood Rip Ride Rockit



    Where: Universal Orlando Resort

    When opened: 2009

    Top speed: 65 mph

    Top height: 170 feet

    High-tech features: Digital audio and video that allows you to customize your ride and take home a souvenir DVD. You choose your songs using a touchpad on the lap bar.
  • Rollercoaster: Storm Runner



    Where: Cedar Point Amusement Park

    Where: Hersheypark

    When opened: 2004

    Top speed: 72 mph

    Top height: 185 feet

    High-tech features: Hydraulic launching system propels riders from 0 to 72 mph in less than 2 seconds. Nitrogen-powered propulsion system cut electricity usage in half to 2.5 megawatts.
  • Ride: Toy Story Mania!



    Where: Disney's California Adventure and Hollywood Studios Park

    When opened: 2008

    Length of ride: 5 minutes

    Goal of ride: Users rack up points by shooting at items displaced in 3-D carnival games.

    High-tech features: Computer-generated 3-D images are rendered 60 times per second. Onboard vehicle gaming systems calculate the position and activity of riders' shooter devices. Patents are pending on the spring-action shooters and vehicle's adjustable seats.
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