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SPARTAN Superway

Raised toward our $3,000 Goal
18 Donors
Project has ended
Project ended on November 21, at 08:00 AM PST
Project Owners

SPARTAN Superway

The SPARTAN Superway is a long-term research initiative at San Jose State University to establish solar powered automated rapid transit ascendant network (“SPARTAN”) systems for urban environments. Since its inception in 2012 by professor Burford “Buff” Furman with Ron Swenson of The International Institute of Sustainable Transportation (INIST), more than 200 students, mentors and faculty have done extensive research, published a major study, written numerous publications, produced functional prototypes of key subsystems, and established an international alliance of universities and industry collaborators on the pathway to commercialization.

Each year students that participate in the program are exposed to hands-on manufacturing, designing, programming and the current meta of renewable energy. Most importantly, students get to work in various teams and sub-groups with an engineer in the industry, make formal presentations, build relationships with various companies, and learn how to properly network.

Aside from gaining invaluable industry experience, students who participate in the Spartan Superway get to contribute directly toward solving a real-world issue in our local community.

Most motor vehicles (even electric vehicles, indirectly) depend on finite polluting fossil fuel sources, but The SPARTAN Superway is truly sustainable in the sense of exclusively using renewable energy sources. Additionally, most mechanized transit modes compete for the same space, imposing congestion and safety hazards upon the public, endangering pedestrians, bicyclists, etc. The SPARTAN Superway will free the streets for citizens to live and thrive in. Furthermore, public transit is inefficient and costly and does not provide adequate mobility for the economically disadvantaged or handicapped. The spartan Superway is clean, convenient, accessible on demand and provides mobility suitable for the entire community. Lastly, pollution from internal combustion engines disproportionately impacts communities of lower socioeconomic status. The SPARTAN Superway operates with clean energy and with low-cost stations, it can reach all parts of the community.

Accomplishing all of these things would not be possible without support from alumni, friends and family like yourself. By contributing to this crowdfunding campaign, you will help us to research and develop all of the following:

  1. Full-scale bogie, guidway and solar array

  2. Half-scale bogie

  3. Small-scale Bogie, guidway and controls

Additionally, your contributions will help ensure we are able to attend the Makerfair this upcoming spring by providing us with all of the necessary supplies and resources.

Please make your gift today to help us further our education and make a meaningful impact on the community around us!


Choose a giving level


The Basics

Could help provide meals during our Makerfaire showing and provide our workspace with essential supplies.


Send It!

Could help us lower transportation and shipping costs for Makerfaire.


Make it!

Could help with our 12th scale electronics, materials and fabrication.



Could pay for the half scale electronics, materials and fabrication. Donors receive a personalized thank you email.



Could help fund our full scale electronics, materials and fabrication. Donors receive a personalized thank you email, social media shout out and a Spartan Superway T-shirt.


Motors. Motors. Motors.

A contribution of this size goes towards the purchase of much needed motors as well as the fabrication of the full scale metal guideway. Donors receive a personalized thank you email, social media shout out and a Spartan Superway T-shirt

Our Crowdfunding Groups