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£50,000 jet pack that lets you become a real-life James Bond

PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 4:30 pm
by Dark Knight
The £50,000 jet pack that lets you become a real-life James Bond
By Mail Foreign Service
Last updated at 11:52 PM on 29th July 2008

It is an aeronautical concept that has long fascinated inventors.

But – outside of the world of comic books – the jet pack has never really got off the ground.

Until now. For a designer called Glenn Martin believes he has come up with a one-man flying machine that actually works.

The Martin Jet Pack has made its public debut at AirVenture, the world’s biggest air show.

It didn’t travel very far (50ft), very high (6ft), or for very long (45 seconds) but that wasn’t the object of the exercise, according to its creator.

‘I wanted to prove that the technology works,’ said Mr Martin. ‘Six feet or 600ft, it makes no difference once you get airborne.’

The huge crowd of aviation enthusiasts at Oshkosh, near Milwaukee, Wisconsin, seemed to agree as the flight was celebrated with wild whoops and cheers.

Mr Martin, a 48-year-old father of two from Christchurch, New Zealand, was five when he first dreamed of having a magic flying belt.

He has spent years perfecting his jet pack, which he hopes to start selling for £50,000 each next year.

After years of building prototypes since his university days, he said he achieved his breakthrough 11 years ago in his garage workshop.

His wife Vanessa was recruited as a test pilot for what would become the Martin Jet Pack. ‘I took some precautions,’ he said. ‘I tied the thing to a pole in the garage so Vanessa wouldn’t go flying through the roof.’

Mrs Martin said: ‘Everything went well, and I was hooked immediately.’ Later Mr Martin also enlisted his son, Harrison, then 15, as another test pilot as he perfected his jet pack, which owes more to the hovercraft than the jet.

A motorbike engine running on petrol uses car fan-belts to drive two fan propellers that spin horizontally inside what looks like two oversized soup cans.

This ‘ducted fan’ design is more efficient than the unshielded rotor of a helicopter.

The engine, fuel tank and pilot are positioned between and below the lift-fans to lower the centre of gravity and prevent the machine turning upside down in flight and diving into the ground.

Two control levers protrude forwards beneath the pilot’s arms. The left one is a joystick controlling forward and backward movement and sideways tilt of the propellers, for left and right turns.

The right lever is the accelerator, the engine start-and-stop switch, and a button for the emergency parachute, located behind the pilot’s head.

Mr Martin recently gained backing from a group of venture capitalists and quit his regular job as a biochemist to develop his machine.

He said: ‘Within six months I’ll take it to 500ft, then the sky’s the limit.’ He believes its ideal flying height will be between 500ft and 1,000ft although it could go up to 6,000ft. He said his machine can stay up for 30 minutes, a flying time he believes will make it a best-seller.

He and his backers believe it will be ideal for commuters, ranchers, the miltary and fire crews tackling forest blazes.

And, of course, it also has appeal as the ultimate boy’s toy.


from http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/ ... -Bond.html

pictures at link, and more info.

could someone please give me £50,000.... :wink:

another great idea from NZ

Would you get one if you had the money?

PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 6:01 pm
by Llew
Wooo, I want! :D

PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2008 7:09 pm
by Boikat
Sure, I'd buy one. But I'm assuming that at that price, I could also affoer extra accident insurance. :P

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 1:29 pm
by The Master
Hopefully they will come up with one that weighs significantly less that the 252lbs (114kg) this one is!

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 3:10 pm
by aldan
I agree on that, TM! Putting all that weight above the head would make anyone who was putting it on feel like he had reverse liposuction, but instead of it being put back where it was, it's put in a huge tub and then balanced on the shoulders... just too much! However, if he could get the metals changed to lighter weight ones, then it could help to lower that weight, but would likely increase the cost factor (and it's not like 50 k Pounds British isn't a lot of money!) considerably.

Re: £50,000 jet pack that lets you become a real-life James

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 4:22 pm
by Qray
The Martin Jet Pack has made its public debut at AirVenture, the world’s biggest air show.

It didn’t travel very far (50ft), very high (6ft), or for very long (45 seconds) but that wasn’t the object of the exercise, according to its creator.

‘I wanted to prove that the technology works,’ said Mr Martin. ‘Six feet or 600ft, it makes no difference once you get airborne.’

The huge crowd of aviation enthusiasts at Oshkosh, near Milwaukee, Wisconsin, seemed to agree as the flight was celebrated with wild whoops and cheers.


It definitely had the "cool factor" though I was more impressed with the F-22A Raptor.

And Oshkosh is nowhere near Milwaukee. Even if you have a Jet Pack.

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 6:09 pm
by Boikat
It'd be nice if they had a F-22 demo during next years Barksdale airshow.

PostPosted: Tue Aug 05, 2008 8:46 pm
by Dark Knight
Boikat wrote:Sure, I'd buy one. But I'm assuming that at that price, I could also affoer extra accident insurance. :P


yea, maybe I should have stated that. Oh and assuming that you can afford the insurance on the jet-pack, in-case of accident or someone stealing it.

PostPosted: Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:09 pm
by Ariel
Cool! I'll take one!

Re: £50,000 jet pack that lets you become a real-life James Bond

PostPosted: Tue Dec 09, 2008 8:38 pm
by Dark Knight
One-man jet ready to cash in
4:00AM Wednesday Dec 10, 2008
By Jarrod Booker

A Kiwi inventor believes his real-life jetpack will repay a near $1 million investment by taxpayers "twenty-fold" as he lines up customers around the world.

Glenn Martin, of Christchurch, created an international sensation when he exhibited his Martin Jetpack at America's biggest consumer airshow, EAA Airventure in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, in July.

The demonstration was less than spectacular and created plenty of scepticism, but it also gained huge worldwide media attention and Mr Martin says he is negotiating with 53 "official" customers.

Now his company's work is to receive a $968,430 boost from the government's Foundation for Research, Science and Technology.

"I believe the New Zealand taxpayers are going to get that money back twenty-fold, and then some over the next few years," Mr Martin told the Herald.

He claims his jetpack, developed over 27 years, will be world-changing technology.

The foundation said its money would enable Mr Martin to improve the performance and safety of the jetpack.

The investment was the second in the project, following $500,000 in February last year for earlier research and development.

The foundation's business investment director, Eileen Basher, said the investment was being made because of the invention's international potential.

"This is a challenging project, but Glenn Martin has a track record of improving each prototype and has experienced people around him to build the company," she said.

"Its success would reinforce New Zealand's reputation as a high-tech country."

The foundation said several firm orders had been received for the jetpack, and expressions of interest had come from many other potential buyers.

Mr Martin said the US airshow debut was a "public relations coup".

He had expected his jetpack customers to be mostly people seeking "rich boys' toys".

"But I was also surprised at the number of commercial approaches I have had from a wide range of organisations around the world, from search and rescue, police, and all sorts of promotional companies.

And we also got quite a lot of scrutiny from military organisations.

"We have had some customers talking to us about buying 25 units, and other customers talking about buying 100 units."

The first jetpacks were to be delivered to customers late next year.

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/technology/ne ... d=10547304

That's $968,430 New Zealand dallors

Now the thing to do is to use that money to give me one, come on....I am a New Zealander after all... :mrgreen:

It needs more work.

PostPosted: Wed Dec 10, 2008 8:55 pm
by Qray
Taxpayers paid for this thing?!?!?!?! They got bent over.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cgels591kXk

Re: £50,000 jet pack that lets you become a real-life James

PostPosted: Tue May 31, 2011 7:59 pm
by Golden Knight
In an update, it recently flew to about 5000 ft or about 1,500 metres high, with a crash test dummy, and they also tested the new parachute, which also worked, human trails should begin soon.