“Fusionman” Soars the Skies (Gallery)

by Nancy Atkinson on May 15, 2008

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A Swiss adventurer who calls himself Fusionman tried out a new jet powered carbon wing, and successfully flew for 5 minutes on May 15 before landing with a parachute. Yves Rossy, a 48-year-old former air force pilot lit the jets on his wing and then jumped from a plane over Bex, Switzerland. He is the world’s first man to fly with jet powered wings.

Rossy performed his first official demonstration of his wings, which are 2.5 meters in diameter and comes with four tiny jets. Once in full flight, Rossy can reach speeds of up to 200km/hr, but he can only stay in the air for a maximum of ten minutes due to the small fuel capacity of his jets.

Rossy, who now works for the Swiss airline, first unveiled his design in 2004. Today he flew like a rocketeer above the Swiss Alps.

Rossy hasn’t always had an easy ride though — during one jump in 2005, he lost control of his wing and didn’t open his parachute until he was just 500 meters above ground.

Since first designing his wing, Rossy has performed more than 30 motorized flights, improving this first prototype with the help of his team. He’s looking to one day have take-off capability with his jet-powered wings. His motto for his test flights: “Always have Plan B ready.”

For more information about Fusionman, see his website. , or the English version

Original News Source: Brisbane Times, AFP

About 

Nancy Atkinson is Universe Today's Senior Editor. She also is the host of the NASA Lunar Science Institute podcast and works with Astronomy Cast. Nancy is also a NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador.

Steve May 15, 2008 at 9:26 AM

We’ll… everybody needs a hobby… right? Some are just more fantastic than others.

Qev May 15, 2008 at 9:27 AM

I wonder how long it’ll be until someone brings this to market? I’d love to take a spin in one. :D

Tallman May 15, 2008 at 12:16 PM

Up Up And Away!!!

D-wreck May 15, 2008 at 1:09 PM

he’s like buzz lightyear.

MrFurious May 15, 2008 at 1:33 PM

I want to know how long it will be before he starts fighting crime.

Mek May 15, 2008 at 4:45 PM

Ahahaha, my first thought as well! I looked at the pictures and thought: god damn, this guy looks like a super hero!

Fusionman is a bad name though; he didn’t get his powers from an accident at a fusion reactor or something.

Freiddie May 15, 2008 at 8:54 PM

This is so coool.

Greg May 15, 2008 at 11:27 PM

Very neat and very crazy. Then again if it works and he has patented it he may make a fortune.

pantzov May 16, 2008 at 1:31 AM

awsome!

BadGuy1981 May 16, 2008 at 6:23 AM

maybe i could save money on my commute to work?

law mc May 16, 2008 at 7:09 AM

the name comes from his sponsor, Hublot a watchmaker which has a model out called ‘Fusion’.

ye, this guy is one of the biggest current legends in aviation. An inspiration to all people wanting to get involved with airplanes, first a jet fighter pilot, then a commercial pilot, and then finally, icarus himself :)

law mc May 16, 2008 at 7:11 AM

i think he is very prone to spins though, he has no control surfaces other than his body shape. still would be a fantastic sensation.

Stephen May 16, 2008 at 1:00 PM

To Infinity, and beyond!

Kiwi May 17, 2008 at 4:40 PM

Falling with style.

Yusuf Musa May 18, 2008 at 8:35 AM

He actually opened a new page in history. I hope he or some other space scientist would further develope the system.

I think it should be better if there is a kind of control panel for manupulating pitching, banking and smooth landing without the need for a parachute.

lolli polly May 19, 2008 at 10:08 AM

wow watch your language Mek!!! but thata is prty cool that he can fly but isnt just like an airplane with no outer covering or like a jet pack in a way

Juliano Toporoski May 26, 2008 at 9:19 AM

Carbon fiber, folding wings, end plates, four jet engines.. What an awesome project!

alphonso richardson June 6, 2008 at 7:22 AM

So BLOODY cool!!!

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