One cafe wants to redefine "fast food."
Inspired by the Tube Transport System in "Futurama," Sam Crofskey of C1 Espresso in Christchurch, New Zealand, is installing a system of pneumatic tubes that will deliver mini burgers (sliders) and nachos to tables at speeds of up to 87 miles per hour.
It's not exactly a new technology; pneumatic tubes have been used to transport messages since the 1850s, and have subsequently been employed over the years as a secure transportation method for cash and medications, as well as an alternative to trains. Indeed, C1 has been using a smaller system to transport orders to the kitchen. By combining the two systems, C1 hopes to reduce wait times -- and toss hotter, fresher food into the bargain.
Crofskey has employed local engineering company Lamson to install a 500-metre system of larger tubes designed to carry heavier loads to deliver food to every table -- at this point in time, only one tube is operational. The food itself is delivered in metal cannisters as opposed to the plastic ones usually used to transport paper -- as you can imagine, you wouldn't want one coming at your head.
As a safety measure, Lamson designed custom air brakes and air-pressure pockets to slow the food to a safer velocity before it reaches the table.
The system will open for service at the end of January.
(Source: CNET Australia)