Where’s My Jetpack?
We've wanted them since seeing 007 in Thunderball. Is Glenn Martin's jetpack finally the answer?
August 16, 2013 - 11:20 am
Nerdy kids like me looked at that and dreamed of having our own rocket pack, flying over the neighborhood, escaping from the bad guys. The real Bell Rocket Belt would have been a bit of a disappointment — total flight time less than 30 seconds, and you really don’t want to run out of gas. Still, I’d have gone for it, and I’m disappointed to discover that while a few of them still exist, pilots are limited to 175 pounds.
Maybe things are (heh, heh) looking up. A New Zealander named Glenn Martin — no relation to me, and as far as I know, no relation to the other aviation pioneer named Glenn Martin — has been working for years on his own version of the jet pack. His version solves some of the problems.
First of all, instead of using real rockets, this uses two ducted fans driven by a gasoline engine. This is not as inherently cool as a rocket, but it means that you can get pretty reasonable flight time.