You’ve seen the Ironman movies, or at least heard of them.
Well, entrepreneur Richard Browning has taken it a notch further. He has tested and flown a system powered by six tiny kerosene-powered jet engines.
We’d say it’s a lot harder than it looks – except it looks *really* hard. In fact, Browning started slowly, with a graduated training regimen. And even while taking the high-risk equivalent of baby-steps, it’s easy to see this was a really difficult thing to learn to do, let alone master.
Two micro jets are attached to each forearm, and two more are strapped to his lower back (with appropriate protection, of course). Each motor produces about 22kg (48 pounds) of force, so there’s plenty of thrust to spare. Enough, in fact, to take total control over Browning’s legs and send them splaying during training and before those two motors were repositioned. Take a look at the incremental testing:
“I can just strap this on and go flying at a moment’s notice,” he told Techcrunch earlier in the week. “It’s less dangerous than riding a sports bike through the countryside.”
“It’s less dangerous than riding a sports bike through the countryside.” To which we might ask: What kind of bike and what kind of countryside are you referring to? We want to avoid both.
Hats (or helmets) off for the incredible training and hard work. Red Bull helped foot the development costs, which were around $50,000 US.
Browning is an ex-soldier. And in a story released today on the Red Bull website, he describes the jet system as “Like riding a bike in three dimensions.”
Would you like to try this? Cool. But before you sign up, consider following a training regimen like Browning’s. The triathlete typically cycles more than 150 kilometers per week, does intensive calisthenics, and – starting at 0200 every Saturday – runs for 40 kilometers.