Inventor of Martin Jetpack Makes 5,000ft Flight [VIDEO]
Most realistically seen as fun for the uber-rich, jetpacks are sometimes used by fire-fighters, search-and-rescue, border security teams and more to help them do their jobs better. But, up until recently, they've been too expensive for widespread use.
Until now. Enter: The Martin Jet Pack.
Invented by Glenn Martin and RC pilot James Bowker, the Martin jetpack is radio controlled (Bowker is in the helicopter you see in the video--the human figure you see on the front of the jetpack is actually a test dummy) and can ascend at 4m/s (800ft/min) in about 6 minutes.
Pretty impressive numbers.
The purpose of this specific flight was to test an emergency safety system with regards to off-the-shelf parachute deployment. The parachute was placed at the front of the jetpack for visibility, as well as to act as a weight balance.
When the aircraft takes a dive, you can see it sustained some damaged on impact, but the most important thing of note? The inventor notes, "we would expect that it is likely a pilot would have walked away from this emergency landing."
The flight for this particular jetpack launch was right under 10 minutes. Definitely a visually appealing test stunt. I want a jetpack now.