Forget talking about making a working flight suit, how about doing something about it? In the latter camp would be Richard Browning who, with some backing from all-things Extreme Red Bull, is actually building a flight suit that looks an awful like the one Tony Stark makes in Iron Man.
His Daedalus Flight Suit consists of six jets — four on his arms and two on his legs — that he uses to get airborne and control his trajectory. It’s hard work, too, as he’s fighting not only gravity but his body’s desire to go complete rag doll on him.
In a video he posted to YouTube, you watch as he goes through early flight attempts, including using suspension cables, elevation ramps, along with launch attempts consisting of jumping, and skipping. Yes, there are some failures.
And then things get interesting. We watch as Browning goes full-on superhero as he takes to the gym to overcome his body weight with handstands and calisthenics. The result isn’t a complete success, but we do see him hover across a yard in England as a photographer on a hoverboard (not a real one) shoots him in the distance.
It’s a promising, if totally impractical, experiment. We’re just glad that someone has the time, money, and straight-up gumption to even try this.
A quick visit to Gravity’s website reveals a bold statement from the upstart: “Gravity has invented, built and filed patents for a human propulsion technology that re-imagines manned flight.”
As for how it works, they use miniaturized jet engines attached to a rigid flight suit (they call it an exoskeleton) along with fuel bladders running throughout.
We’re curious as to where this will go. If you’re an enterprising engineer looking for your next gig, they’re hiring. You could do worse than creating the real Iron Man.
Watch a video of the suit below.