Showing 10 posts tagged helicopter
We became interested in human-powered helicopters while watching NPR’s Human-Powered Helicopters: Straight Up Difficult! So seeing one of the featured teams finally win the American Helicopter Society (AHS) Sikorsky Prize, after the competition first began in 1980 — 33 years ago — is pretty exciting stuff.
The goal of the competition: hover for 60 seconds, reach a height of 3 meters, and stay within a 10m x 10m area. Dozens of teams tried and hadn’t (yet) succeeded, until the AeroVelo Atlas team from the University of Toronto met the challenge on 13 June 2013:
This incredible flight was 64.11 seconds in duration (World Record for “Duration on Hover”), reached a 3.3m peak altitude, and drifted a maximum of 9.8m…
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The video above is a compilation of the winning flight and other test flights, but you can watch the entire prize-winning flight of AeroVelo’s Atlas here.
The helicopter-bike is a prototype developed by a team of three Czech companies, which just took it for a five-minute test flight inside a Prague exhibition hall. That’s actually a lightweight dummy in the driver’s seat, since those massive propellers make this thing weigh over 200 pounds, meaning it’s not yet flyable with the weight of a human on board.
Science fiction stories in which pilots control spacecrafts with their minds have become less about fiction and more science. A team of researchers at the University of Minnesota have developed the next step in thought-controlled vehicles. Watch this model helicopter fly through an obstacle course using brainwaves.
The aircraft’s pilot operates it remotely using a cap of electrodes to detect brainwaves that are translated into commands.
Ultimately, the developers of the mind-controlled copter hope to adapt their technology for directing artificial robotic limbs and other medical devices. Today’s best neural prosthetics require electrodes to be implanted in the body and are thus reserved for quadriplegics and others with disabilities severe enough justify invasive surgery.
"We want to develop something non-invasive that can benefit lots of people, not just a limited number of patients," says Bin He, a biomedical engineer at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, whose new results build on his previous work with a virtual thought-controlled helicopter.
A fascinating note: some would-be pilots could not provide clear thought commands during trial studies. Those candidates who meditated or practiced yoga had better focus and stronger mind-body awareness, allowing them to adapt to the brain-computer interface with less training.
Read the rest of the article at Nature.com.
This nine and a half minute video is longer for a reason: it takes time for a Sikorsky S-58T helicopter to lift a microwave repeater system through the air to the south tower of the Golden Gate Bridge!
In September (2009), after a couple of weather and technical delays, ARIS Helicopters accomplished a high-profile lift and placement job on the world-famous Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco. With pilot Sam Nowden flying a Sikorsky S-58T twin-Turbine helicopter, the job consisted of removing and replacing a twin parabolic microwave repeater disc assembly on the south tower of the bridge.
And here’s another view (including a hello from the guys doing the job).