Monday, December 4, 2023

A man takes to the skies with an electric backpack helicopter

A recently released video by the Australian company CopterPack shows a pilot rising high off the ground using what amounts to be an “electric backpack helicopter” – a futuristic blend of a jetpack and drone.

Called CopterPack, the device is a futuristic idea for personal flight with two giant rotors on either side of the operator, lifting the person into the air. The creators describe this idea as a “manned drone,” “backpack helicopter,” and “electric jetpack.” It’s bulky but looks surprisingly stable and controllable.

The video posted on YouTube shows a pilot effortlessly taking to the skies on a beach in Australia, twisting and turning over a body of water.

A man takes to the skies with an electric backpack helicopter.
A man takes to the skies with an electric backpack helicopter on a beach in Australia. Credit: CopterPack

The two rotors, fairly large ones with diameters around 3 feet, connect to a rigid-frame backpack via carbon fiber tubes. The backpack houses battery packs and a pair of flat armrests with hand controls on them.

Some may find the rotor system dangerous as they spin at extremely high speeds just inches from the pilot’s neck. Also, they don’t appear to have any netting to ensure the wearer won’t have any appendages chopped off. By rotating back and forth on the central axis, the pilot is able to twist and turn in the sky, adjusting his flight path.

According to the company’s website, this two-prop electric manned multirotor has a “self-leveling autopilot.” The futuristic form of personal transport is quite impressive, but there is very limited information about the specifications of the electric backpack helicopter. For example, flight time, maximum altitude, and final speed are critical elements that the company has not yet released.

For now, they have managed to arouse the interest of curious people and enthusiasts of personal flight technologies, which other companies have already tested in the recent past and without much success.