The Ornithopter - a man-powered flying machine with flapping, bird-like wings - was filmed November 4 as it made a test flight towed by a car at the Cranfield College of Aeronautics, Bedfordshire.
The Ornithopter - a man-powered flying machine with flapping, bird-like wings - was filmed November 4 as it made a test flight towed by a car at the Cranfield College of Aeronautics, Bedfordshire. The Ornithopter, sponsored by "The Daily Mail", was piloted by its creator, 31-year-old London sculptor Emiel Hartman. For some distance the man-made bird flew proudly along - its wings stationary in the upper position - but then seemed to get out of control, crashing to the ground and damaging its undercarriage. Mr.Hartman was not hurt and afterwards the Ornithopter: was moved back to its hangar for repairs.
Emiel Hartman's strange craft is claimed as the world's first aeroplane scientifically designed to fly by manpower alone. Under tow, test flights have been made at Cranfield since late last month.
In man-powered flight, the pilot obtains lift and forward speed by rowing like an oarsman on foot pedals and hand grips. For two years the Ornithopter has been developed in secret with the help of aircraft engineers and scientists.
The Man-powered Aviation Group of Pritain's Royal Aeronautical Society is now considering launching its own project for this kind of flight, and another man-powered aircraft - worked by pedals - is currently being tested in Britain. A two-man craft, consisting essentially of a tandem bicycle in a fuselage and driving a pusher propeller at the rear, is being developed by a Queen's College, Belfast, lecturer.