Jetpack Travel Is A Step Closer After The Latest Record Of 5000 Feet
By Mike Mitchell
June 6, 2011 - The future of Jetpack travel is a step
closer after the latest record‐breaking
test in the Martin Jetpack. The Jetpack shot into the
sky over the Canterbury Plains,
New Zealand at a climb rate of 800ft per minute,
reaching an altitude of 5,000 feet before safely
deploying the first ballistic jetpack parachute. The
flight duration under its own power was 7:15 minutes.
The previous record was 100 ftp minute and 50 feet
This incredible flight high above Pudding Hill in
Canterbury is a major step towards commercial production
of the world?s first practical Jetpack being developed
by New Zealand?s Martin Aircraft Company. ?This
successful test brings the future another step closer,?
said the Jetpack?s Inventor, Glenn Martin.
The record‐breaking flight is part of an intensive period of flight‐testing for the Jetpack as the Martin Aircraft Company works through the final development phase of the Jetpack?s technologies with the aim to have first deliveries of both the manned and unmanned (UAV) versions to key customers within the next 18 months.
of Time Magazines? top 50 inventions for 2010, the Martin
Jetpack has the ability to fly for half an hour or more, climb
more than 1000ft per minute and to cruise at 100 km/h. ?In this
test we limited the jetpack to 800 ft/min climb so the chase
helicopters could keep up,? said Martin.
first during the high flight was the world first test of the
Jetpack?s Ballistic Parachute safety system. While this test was
a verification of the safety system using an off the shelf
version; Martin Aircraft believes that with the purpose built
Ballistic Parachute they are developing, unlike helicopters, the
Jetpack?s avoidance curve can be removed entirely ? meaning that
with the Martin safety systems there is no height where a
catastrophic failure needs to lead to significant injury.
high altitude flight the company tested the UAV unmanned version
using a weighted dummy simulating a pilot?s weight to
demonstrate the Jetpack?s ability to fly high.
Martin Jetpack customers are expected to be in the military and
emergency response sectors around the world. Unmanned Jetpacks could be
used for delivery, observation and extraction in areas and situations
too dangerous for people and other aircraft to get to.
He said all the
technologies tested during the high flight performed well and
technicians are already working on the next test to push new boundaries
of the flight envelope.
?In the past two
years we?ve gone from unveiling a world leading invention to a company
on the verge of international commercialization of both the manned and
unmanned versions of the Jetpack.?
Based on customer
demand and international interest in the development of the Jetpack for
a range of uses, the Martin Aircraft Company believes the Jetpack has
the potential to become a significant international export earner for
New Zealand. The Martin Jetpack is a vertical take‐off
and landing aircraft that can either be flown by a person or operated
In the future when disasters strike the jetpack could be used to fly
rescuers to areas where helicopters and planes can't get to.
The Jetpack has a
number of advantages over helicopters most importantly it?s easy to fly.
On average a Jetpack pilot will be trained and competent with only
around twenty hours of classroom and flight training, costing just a few
thousand dollars. Helicopter pilots, by comparison, take 50 hours of
flight time and many more hours of classroom training, costing tens of
thousands of dollars.
That means, in a rescue service for example, rather than having a single dedicated pilot, every member of a team could be trained and competent in a Jetpack. It?s safe. With the Ballistic Parachute, unlike helicopters, the Jetpack?s avoidance curve can be removed entirely, that is to say with the aircraft?s safety systems there is no height where a catastrophic failure needs to lead to pilot fatality.
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