'Motorbike in the sky': New Zealand inventor granted flying permit for jetpack
Glenn Martin’s prototype has a top speed of 46 mph
Ever since Sean Connery donned a jetpack and propelled himself skywards in the 1965 Bond movie Thunderball, many have fantasised about following suit.
Soon it could become reality, thanks to a “motorbike in the sky” built by a New Zealand inventor and just granted a flying permit.
Glenn Martin’s jetpack – a carbon-fibre frame attached to a gas-powered, V-4 piston engine – can fly at an altitude of 1.5 km and at a top speed of 74 kph.
The Civil Aviation Authority permit means it can now undergo its first manned tests, expected to take place in the next few months.
Mr Martin came up with the first prototype while “tinkering in his garage”, according to the New Zealand Herald. The chief executive of Martin Aircraft, Peter Coker, said this week that the latest version was capable of a half-hour flight, with a cruising speed of about 56kph.
A simplified version could be on the market by 2015, and Mr Coker said that several governments – keen to explore its military capabilities as well as its potential use in search and rescue operations – had expressed interest. So has a company which tests floodlights in stadiums.
The other potential market, he told the Herald, is thrill-seekers.
“It’s essentially a motorbike in the sky, so I imagine anyone who has a snowmobile or a jetski, this is going to be something they’re going to want in their garage.”
Inspired by childhood TV shows such as Thunderbirds and Lost in Space, Mr Martin set out to create a jetpack suitable for everyday use by people with no pilot training. He spent 30 years developing the machine in his garage in Christchurch.
The pilot straps himself into the frame and controls the jetpack with two joysticks. A pair of cylinders containing propulsion fans provide the lift.
Actress sees off speculation about her appearance in an amazing way
Review: Despite an uphill climb to see Jake Bugg in action, his performance is notably flat
- 1 Renee Zellweger on plastic surgery reports: 'I'm living a fulfilling life and I'm thrilled that perhaps it shows'
- 2 Salisbury ranked seventh-best city in the world to visit in Lonely Planet’s Best in Travel 2015
- 3 Disney announces new female-led film Moana
- 4 Banksy not arrested: Internet duped by fake report claiming artist's identity revealed
- 5 Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
Australian jihadist Abdullah Elmir vows Isis will fight 'until black flag is on the top of Buckingham Palace'
Renee Zellweger on plastic surgery reports: 'I'm living a fulfilling life and I'm thrilled that perhaps it shows'
Chicago voter tells Obama 'don't touch my girlfriend' – Obama stays super smooth
Oscar Pistorius: The brutal prison life that awaits disgraced athlete
Banksy not arrested: Internet duped by fake report claiming artist's identity revealed
Cameron is warned 'no possibility' of UK reducing immigration and that bid to bring in quota on migrant workers would be illegal
Residents should throw a street party and mix with immigrant neighbours, councils told
Russell Brand threatened with arrest after filming outside Fox News headquarters
Of course, teenage girls need role models – but not like beauty vlogger Zoella
London bus driver 'kicks gay couple off for kissing'
Jose Manuel Barroso warns David Cameron against making 'historic mistake' over immigration reforms
£35000 per annum: Ashdown Group: 5 month Fixed Term Contract - Telecommunicati...
£18000 per annum + competitive OTE: SThree: Progressive in Manchester is seeki...
£24000 - £28000 per annum + bonus & benefits: Ashdown Group: IT Business Syste...
£26000 per annum + 25 days holiday & further benefits: Ashdown Group: Telecomm...