He flies with the confidence of Superman, covers distance with the speed of Buzz Lightyear and manoeuvres through the sky like an eagle. Some call him ‘Fusionman‘, others know him as ‘Jetman‘. Whatever you call him, there’s no denying that Swiss pilot Yves Rossy has changed aviation history. Before you think we ‘re giving him too much credit, here’s a quick rundown on Jetman.
On 6 November 2006, after ten years of developing ‘wings’ and 15 prototypes, Rossy became the first and only man to fly using a jet-propelled wingsuit. Although his flight over Bex, Switzerland only lasted for a five minutes and 50 seconds, it ushered in a new age in human aviation.
Seven years later, Rossy has flown over the Swiss Alps, became the first man to fly across the English Channel from Calais, France to Dover, UK, using a jet-powered wing and is still soaring higher.
Rossy has used several wingsuits over the years, leaving each one behind for a more advanced prototype. He is currently using a two-metre wing which can remain in skies for 10 minutes. The wingsuit is powered by four 22-kilogram, Jet-Cat P200 wingsuit engines with an automatic starting sequence of 25 seconds. Weighing in at 55 kilograms, the wing can reach 200 km/h.
Check out this cool video of Jetman making his first public flight in the United States of America at the 2013 EAA Airventure in Oshkosh,Winebago County. Watch as he conquers the skies of Oshkosh with ease and do not miss out on the breathtaking scenes of him flying alongside Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress (a World War II multi-engine bomber aircaft).
Warning: This video might inspire to create your own wings and hit the skies!
Jetman in Oshkosh
Video from jetmanofficial
Main image courtesy Ars Eletronica