We've waited a lifetime for someone to finally create a true jetpack and that wait is now over. Meet the JB-9 Jetpack as it takes a lap around the Statue of Liberty in New York.
The JB-9 Jetpack is the brainchild of Jetpack Aviation, a project born of Australian David Mayman's passion. He teamed up with engineer and inventor Nelson Tyler ten years ago to create what's finally here.
The JB-9 is small enough to be worn on the back and light enough to walk around while wearing. In fact Mayman claims to have jogged about a kilometer with it on his back, minus fuel.
When filled it will fly for about ten minutes before needing to land. That's burning a gallon of fuel a minute, since it tops out at ten capacity. But this is standard petrol so can be filled up at any petrol station.
The JB-9 uses two small turbines to produce upward thrust. The exhaust fumes mix with ambient air to bring the temperature down to a warm airstream.
The jetpack is controlled with two sticks and gets up to a limited top speed of 100kph. But the prototype has already been tested flying at over 200kph. It can climb at between 500 and 1,000 feet per minute, which increases as you get higher. It could, technically, get to 10,000 feet – presuming anyone wanted to risk that test.
The JB-9 is legal to sell and fly as an ultralight. But at the moment it's not up for sale. At the moment Jetpack Aviation isn't happy selling them as they are – they want them to have 'brains' so they self-stabilise. It will be a bit like a helicopter autopilot. But first they're going to launch a race series with trained pilots. Here's hoping we can all get our hands on one soon.