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Personal Flight

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The Jetpod gives vision to the future of flight

By - February 14, 2005 7 Pictures
The Jetpod is a Very Quiet Short Take-Off and Landing twin-jet aircraft, can cruise at 300 knots (350 mph, 550 kmh) and requires just 125 metres to take-off or land using a combination of horizontal and vertical thrust. The Jetpod takes off then reconfigures from a VQSTOL jet into a fast-jet accelerating to 350 mph in just a few seconds. Just 16 months from first flight, the jetpod could represent the future of transport. Read More
— Aircraft

The Airscooter: a helicopter for the home?

By - January 20, 2005 10 Pictures
January 21, 2005 The AirScooter II is an ultralight helicopter designed for easy control and manoeuvrability that looks set to take personal recreational airborne vehicles to new heights. Designed by AirScooter Corporation, the AirScooter II is a vehicle that has looked to aviation's past to help develop its future. In building and designing the AirScooter II, inventor and AirScooter Corporation cofounder Woody Norris and his team have successfully adapted a technology that has had a long line of difficulties in getting off the ground. We all recognise the modern helicopter, with its main rotor and tail rotor, but in terms of rotorcraft, the coaxial type had seemed likely to be limited to high-tech military and large transport helicopters. but things are progressing well and the future looks incredibly bright for the innovative and intelligent design of AirScooter II, an ultra-lightweight coaxial rotorcraft helicopter. Read More
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Preparations for world's first human landing WITHOUT a parachute

By - January 2, 2005 4 Pictures
January 3, 2005 Jumping out of a plane without a parachute is not something we recommend but that's exactly what B.A.S.E. jumper Jeb Corliss has been doing to help pave the way for the world's first landing attempt without a parachute. Up to now, he's been testing speeds and fall rates in the wing-suit so that he can determine what's required to be able to land the wing-suit without a parachute. Corliss and Go Fast! - sponsored test pilot Luigi Cani teamed up to gather the data. Jeb flew in free fall donning a parachute alongside Luigi, who was at the controls of the world's smallest and fastest parachute-known as the ICARUS VX-39. The two were able to gather data using GPS systems attached to Luigi that tracked exact forward speeds, exact fall rate and the glide angles so the calculations could be done to determine what apparatus would be needed for a safe landing. Read More
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Da Vinci's Ornithopter ready to fly after 500 years

By - December 2, 2004 8 Pictures
December 3, 2004 Humankind has dreamed of flight since ancient times, but until now most attempts to fly by flapping wings, either using human muscle or mechanical power, have failed. Over 500 years ago, Leonardo da Vinci conceptualised a self powered flying machine that would achieve both lift and thrust with flapping wings alone and named it the "ornithopter". Now, hot on the heels of the 100th Anniversary of the Wright Brothers pioneering air flight and the recent X Prize won by Burt Rutan for civilian, privately funded space flight, a team of scientists, engineers, and historians in Toronto have taken on the challenge to make Leonardo's orinthopter dream a reality. Read More
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CT2K ultralight for personalised long-distance travel

By - November 22, 2004 4 Pictures
November 23, 2004 The CT2K ultralight sports aircraft is so compact it almost looks like a toy. Yet with only a 9.3m wingspan, 2.16m height, 6.22m width and 262kg (empty) weight, it can travel over 2,000 km on a full tank. German designers and manufacturers Flight Design has been selling the ultralight CT2K plane throughout Europe and now it is flying high in over a dozen countries in a resurgence of personalised, ultralight flight. Read More
— Aircraft

M-400 SkyCar pre-sales underway

By - November 14, 2004 2 Pictures
UPDATED November 15, 2004 After recent successful tethered hovering flights of the M400 Skycar, including at the at the WIRED NextFest in San Francisco in May, 2004, Moller International is accepting deposits to secure delivery positions this groundbreaking vehicle. A 10% deposit of US$100,000 will put you in the top 100 on the delivery list for the M-400 Skycar, which is expected to be FAA-certified for use by the end of 2005. Over 100 reservations have already been placed and demand is expected to grow as the working model nears production. Read More
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Skyblazer dual mode 'Flying Car' concept

By - November 7, 2004 6 Pictures
November 8, 2004 Automobiles and airplanes were both inventions of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Both technologies were heralded as examples of technical progress and both carried the promise of great personal freedom that is still being explored today with the possibility of dual mode 'flying cars'. These futuristic concept vehicles have been covered in gizmag before, notably the Moller M400 Skycar, and now another prototype is being proposed by Robin Haynes with his 'Skyblazer roadable aircraft'. Read More
— Aircraft

Man flies like a bird - a jet-powered bird!

By - October 7, 2004 2 Pictures
October 8, 2004 Man has been attempting to fly for around 2400 years yet has only begun to master the process in the last century. In the history of flight, 2004 is shaping as a good year. One of the pioneers of human flight, Yves Rossy, recently achieved a landmark which went largely unheralded. Rossy’s feats might well go down among the most daring as well as momentous in aviation history. Rossy made headlines in 2003 when he flew 12 kilometres for the loss of just 3000 metres of altitude, achieving his feat by jumping out of plane wearing three metre, carbon fibre wings. Read More

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