Sunday, May 10, 2009

Ducted Fan Jetpack Shows Promise

The device seen in the video is the Martin Jetpack. Although technically it's a ducted fan and not a jet, the device does give the user actual flight. At first I was skeptical of this as my heros Jamie and Adam on Mythbusters couldn't get a device like this off the ground, but they were using plans from the Internet and off the shelf parts. This one is made by professionals.

The device is reportedly easy to fly with a joystick and may not require a pilot's license although I'm not sure about either of these claims. One of the coolest features for those of you who love adrenaline, is the safety parachute the device can deploy. From the website: "Production versions of the Jetpack are equipped with a Ballistic Parachute system from Ballistic Recovery Systems. This enables the pilot to be saved from a catastrophic failure down to a reasonably low altitude. Ballistic parachutes can open at very low altitudes, particularly if the aircraft has some forward speed. For this reason the "flight profiles" will be calculated to have the lowest risk possible."

The cost is $100,000 and the purchase requires training which is an extra charge (although I cannot find info on how much). However, the training is 5 days and might be as long as 15 days so make sure you've got some vacation time coming. If you are interested, it requires a $10,000 deposit and when your device is about 180 days from delivery, the company will contact you for an additional $50,000. Once the device is ready and you've received the training, you pay the additional balance and the device is shipped to you.

So, you risk lovers, this might be the thing for you!

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