Tag Archives: flight

A WIRED mini-documentary about the Gravity Jet Suit – an impressive gas turbine contraption designed by British engineer Richard Browning capable of 50km/h air speeds but requiring a considerable level of skill and stamina to control.


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Of this tonal flight of fancy, inspired by the work of artist Dennis Hlynsky, Conner Griffith sez:

Crow flight patterns are echoed at a thirtieth of a second to create a loopable waveform that corresponds to a tone. The waveform was measured at 27 crows across one tenth of a second. The animation plays at 12fps (2.25 seconds per 27 birds) and is 22.5 times slower than the rate of the comparable frequency. The median crow waveform was “tuned” to D4 and from there, the other crow waveforms were measured. Different wave shapes (sine, saw) were loosely based on flight pattern shape, which was a result of the speed of the crow and the angle and proximity of the crow to the camera.

Well, duh.




Hick writes:

So this happened. Stopping off on the way to Dubai, on our next flight from Qatar, a man  and his companion (above) boarded the flight, this moment happened mid-flight, when the man went to the toilet…

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Colibri – an elegant kinetic sculpture by Derek Hugger that mimics the  flight of the hummingbird. Sez he:

Every element of motion has been completely mechanized, from the beating wings to the flaring tail. Intricate systems of linkages and cams bring the sculpture to life with a continuous flow of meticulously timed articulations. As each mechanism has been linked to the next, Colibri cycles through its complete range of motions by the simple turn of a crank. This project took me roughly 700 hours and contains about 400 parts.

More at his website. And detailed maker instructions at his shop.


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Behold: the Trifan 600 VTOL Plane – 1900km range, maximum weather-avoiding cruising altitude of 9.1km and three ducted fans for vertical take off and landing on a heliport.

Currently in development.

Hurry up, dammit.



72 year old artist Bob Potts uses hand-crafted gears, cranks and chains at his workshop – a 19th century barn in upstate New York – to create wonderful kinetic sculptures mimicking the flight of birds and insects and the swimming motions of fish.

The finished pieces are assembled in collaboration with his friend, painter and sculptor George Rhoads.


A fascinating visualisation of the wing beat patterns of different flying creatures ( bat, dragonfly, Canada goose, hummingbird, and hawk moth) by science blogger Elanor Lutz.

Over to you, Fluffy Biscuits.