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Electric model helicopter lift human

Use many model electric helicopters to power human flight
(+3, -3)
  [vote for,

Update. 2nd November 2011, This has already been done. See the links. Negative 2 votes again this idea, why? I never know.

Update 3rd November 2011, I really think their e-volo implementation has the real potential to become a personal transport device. Electric motors are small and reliable compared to fuel motors and if one fails you don't fall out of the sky. Also more direct digital control of each motor for stability as compared to the Moller VTOL or NASA's Puffin concept. Those concepts also rely on a smaller number of powerful motors and more risk if one fails. Small electric motors should be cheaper as well. There are available lightweight batteries, super-capacitors. People can disagree with me, lets see how it turns out in the future!


The idea is that you could use many electric powered model helicopters to lift a human off the ground. If 80 electric model helicopters are used, each one can lift 1kg of weight and they are kept separated at a distance with strong fishing line down to the person, you could perhaps lift a lightweight person, maybe a 45kg person. Maybe someone can suggest a better way to keep the heli's structured above the person so that they can operate without touching each other without adding too much weight to the overall structure. Can someone suggest what heli's could be used to achieve this? I know that a simple electric helicopter can lift a 1kg weighted coke bottle as I have seen a video of this.

philhk, Feb 22 2010

Video of lifting 1kg weight electric heli - see end of video http://quietube.com...//vimeo.com/6194911
Video of lifting 1kg weight electric heli - see end of video [philhk, Feb 22 2010]

Electric ducted fan http://www.Ductedfa...chubeler_DS_51.html
3kg thrust, about 4 inches diameter [MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 22 2010]

Idea has been implemented http://nextbigfutur...n-first-manned.html
Idea has been implemented, electric heli's work for lifting a person [philhk, Nov 02 2011]

See the vision and design studies http://www.e-volo.com/Vision.html
See the vision and design studies [philhk, Nov 02 2011]

flying on a quadcopter http://www.independ...ecord-10278561.html
[xaviergisz, Jun 01 2015]


       On the keeping all the helicopters separate, you can either have the lines radiate from a central point (the person) and then calculate how far (in angular terms) each one has to be from one another to avoid getting tangled up in string - however, doing this would be tricky as each heli would have to pull at an angle, and so lose some lift to the tune of cos(ø) - not to mention the control issues of having 50+ closely clustered helicopters flying at prescribed angles from the norm.   

       The alternative option is to spread everything out with a great big horizontal lifting beam, or grid of beams. Maybe extending out from the person with a radius of 20ft - each helicopter could be attached to a loading point by string as short as you liked - in fact, why even use string - just glue each helicopter down (making it no more than a glorified fan really)   

       The next part of the plan is deciding what material to use for your beams - it's got to be thin, so as not to interfere with the airflow, and it's got to be light so as not to add too much weight to the person, and it's got to be strong in order to both spread out the helicopters, and still provide stiffness enough to apply their combined forces to the person in the middle.
zen_tom, Feb 22 2010

       You could stack the helicopters vertically, but you would need to make sure they were far enough apart not to be in each others' downdraught. Or you could stack them like a Calder mobile - each one has a beam attached to it perhaps one meter long, which bears strings at its ends for two higher up.
pocmloc, Feb 22 2010

       You'd be better off with electric ducted fans - they are available for model "jet" aircraft, and have much greater thrust (up to several kg). They are also much more compact, and could be stacked side-by-side. A square metre, packed with these fans, would give a big lift.
MaxwellBuchanan, Feb 22 2010

       Very cool [philhk]   

       [philhk] incorrectly assumes that an idea that's feasible will lead to buns...   

       Have a consolation croissant.
mitxela, Nov 02 2011

       The e-volo video is very cool indeed. I asked the guy about using ducted fans instead of open rotors, and he says it's a question of weight and complexity; since he's levitated further than I have, I can't really argue with him.   

       I want one. Preferably now.
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 02 2011

       Mythbusters did something similar a while back, and they went with ducted fans, too.
Alterother, Nov 02 2011

       Yes, but they didn't get off the ground.
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 02 2011

       Didn't they? I never saw the end of that episode. I have something of a long-distance relationship with television.
Alterother, Nov 02 2011

       No. I think they wimped out and tested it using their crash-dummy, but it didn't produce enough lift.
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 02 2011

       [philhk] incorrectly assumes that an idea that's feasible will lead to buns...   

       In reply to this, should halfbakery people vote for an idea more if its more feasible ? I'm not sure what exactly the judgment criteria is here.
philhk, Nov 03 2011

       Fishbones don't necessarily mean a bad idea - at least people took the time to comment and vote.
mitxela, Nov 03 2011

       I'd have fishboned this because it was fairly obvious, and didn't have much of a method. But I somehow missed it, so [ ].
baconbrain, Nov 03 2011

       // what exactly the judgment criteria is here.//   

       1. Spelling and punctuation.
2. Involvement of cats, custard or trebuchets.
3. Spectacularity.
4. Ingenuity.
5. Spelling and punctuation.
6. Not being French
7. Originality.

       I think you did OK on 1, 3, 5 and (pending evidence for the prosecution) 6. Pretty good on 4, less good on 7. Complete fail on 2.   

       Stick with it. The first five years are the longest.
MaxwellBuchanan, Nov 03 2011

       You forgot 'inadvisable but possibly hilarious use of hazardous materials'.
Alterother, Nov 04 2011

       [narked-for-deletion] baked.   

       ...what? I'm kidding   

       'grats [phil], you guys put together a pretty nifty piece of flying sculpture.   

       Dun worry'bout the bones, they're there because of the "kept at a distance with strong fishing line".   

       So whose idea was it to use the bouncy ball as landing gear ?
FlyingToaster, Nov 04 2011

       cluster rving?
pashute, Jun 01 2015


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