Transition to winged flight marks another world-first for Jetman
Another stunning milestone for the Jetman team, as pilot Vince Reffet demonstrates the new ability to take off from the ground, then hit the gas on the carbon jet wing's four turbine engines and soar away into the sky.
After demonstrating its autonomous VTOL capabilities last December, the Jetman team has now joined the dots to show how it can transition from an electronically balanced hover to super-fast winged flight in a demo done over Dubai on Valentine's day.
The winged flight capability sets the Jetman team apart from other jet-powered personal flight devices like jet boards, jetpacks and jet suits, because it allows more efficient flight at very high speeds of up to 400 km/h (250 mph), as well as some pretty awesome aerobatic capabilities. The Jetman team is the only group willing to take its device up to high altitudes at this point, and has flown alongside airliners in previous flights when launched aerially out of other aircraft.
In this new video, Reffet hovers briefly after takeoff before hammering the throttle and rocketing the new four-turbine jet wing up to an altitude of 1,800 m (6,000 ft) over the city of Dubai, performing some gratuitous loops and then pulling the parachute cord for a soft landing. No point wasting fuel on a VTOL landing when a 'chute will do the job just fine!
The entire flight lasted just three minutes, reflecting just how fast this jet wing can fire itself skyward. The transition to winged flight looked pretty much effortless, Reffet accelerating away at an astonishing rate to catch some air under the wing and swoop upward. It makes for pretty amazing viewing in the video below.