Czechs present bicycle that can fly

Jun 12, 2013
Two men watch the remote-controlled Flying Bike with a test dummy during its presentation in Prague on Wednesday, June 12, 2013. Three Czech companies have teamed up to make a prototype of an electric bicycle that can fly. Controlled remotely, the bike carrying a figurine successfully took off Wednesday inside a large exhibition hall in Prague and landed safely after a five-minute flight. (AP Photo/CTK, Stanislav Zbynek)

Is it a bike? Is it a plane?

Three Czech companies have teamed up to make a prototype of an that successfully took off Wednesday inside an exhibition hall in Prague and landed safely after a remote-controlled, five-minute flight.

Looking like a heavy mountain bike, it weighs 95 kilograms (209 pounds). It has two battery-power in the front, two in the back and one each on the sides.

Journalists watch the remote-controlled Flying Bike with a test dummy during its presentation in Prague on Wednesday, June 12, 2013. Three Czech companies have teamed up to make a prototype of an electric bicycle that can fly. Controlled remotely, the bike carrying a figurine successfully took off Wednesday inside a large exhibition hall in Prague and landed safely after a five-minute flight. (AP Photo/CTK, Stanislav Zbynek)

A dummy rode in the saddle.

The remote-controlled Flying Bike with a test dummy flies during its presentation in Prague on Wednesday, June 12, 2013. Three Czech companies have teamed up to make a prototype of an electric bicycle that can fly. Controlled remotely, the bike carrying a figurine successfully took off Wednesday inside a large exhibition hall in Prague and landed safely after a five-minute flight. (AP Photo/CTK, Stanislav Zbynek)

Milan Duchek, technical director of Duratec, a bicycle frames maker, says more powerful batteries will be needed before a human takes a two-wheeled flight.

The remote-controlled Flying Bike with a test dummy is ready for its during presentation fly in Prague on Wednesday, June 12, 2013. Three Czech companies have teamed up to make a prototype of an electric bicycle that can fly. Controlled remotely, the bike carrying a figurine successfully took off Wednesday inside a large exhibition hall in Prague and landed safely after a five-minute flight.(AP Photo/CTK, Stanislav Zbynek)


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User comments : 23

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travisr
5 / 5 (6) Jun 12, 2013
They call it a bi-plane HAR HAR HAR... har... heh... uhhmmmmm...
VendicarE
2 / 5 (4) Jun 12, 2013
Why would they be trying to build a flying bicycle, when flying dildo's are in such demand?
GSwift7
4 / 5 (4) Jun 12, 2013
Okay, so you want to go for a ride through the park. While you're there, you get to fly around for a few minutes, and that's really cool. Pedalling the +200 lb monster bike up the hill on the way home sucks, so you curse at it and chuck it in the ditch. That was a fun day.
packrat
1 / 5 (4) Jun 12, 2013
It must be nice to have money to waste on building silly stuff like that.

It wouldn't be legal to fly hardly anywhere and it's going to be years before batteries get good enough to make a flight of any worthwhile distance.

A couple of small high hp 2 cycle engines would work better.
Q-Star
2.3 / 5 (9) Jun 12, 2013
@Zephyr,,,,,

Is this one of your projects? Better be careful,,,,,, the auto-makers might do what the big oil guys did to the "did-now-for-90-years-cold-fusion physicist".

Is that ya on the,,,, well what ever ya call it,,, is that ya?
antialias_physorg
3.4 / 5 (5) Jun 13, 2013
Okay, so you want to go for a ride through the park. While you're there, you get to fly around for a few minutes, and that's really cool. Pedalling the +200 lb monster bike up the hill on the way home sucks, so you curse at it and chuck it in the ditch. That was a fun day.


Counterpoint:

"Okay, so you want to go for a ride through the park. Pedalling in the park is no prob (as it's even). Pedalling the +200 lb monster bike up the hill on the way home sucks - so you get to fly over it, and that's really cool. That was a fun day."

Now I'm not saying that this is the next big thing. But you gotta admit that they managed to get this thing flying is kinda neat.

It's a demonstrator of what can be done. (Heck, make these things modular and stash them at riverbanks. Strap one to the bike and cross the river and dump it on the other side at a recharge station)

We may get our flying cars yet - they may just be flying bicycles. Why not?

antialias_physorg
3.9 / 5 (7) Jun 13, 2013
but I don't see any meaning in such a project. It's just a toy.

Why don't you strap your personal cold fusion thingy to it and have an indefinitely flying bicycle. THAT would make you rich in no time. Much faster than going for cold fusion powerplants.
GSwift7
4 / 5 (4) Jun 13, 2013
The best battery that's commercially available right now is called a lithium polymer (li-po), not to be confused with lithium ion batteries. They are used mainly in hobby applications, like remote control helicopters, where you need the combination of high storage/weight and large power output. The drawbacks are that they are fragile and require careful handling (so you don't puncture the flexible outer coating), and they explode if you charge them improperly (over-charge or drain to zero and then attempt to recharge again).

The max flight time scales favorably with larger aircraft, since a larger % of the aircraft weight is power and propulsion, but if you can get 20 minutes you're doing really good. Adding the weight of a person (assume 200 lbs max load) on a 200 lb air-bike would destroy your flight time.

On a side note, they make a flight control board the size of a quarter that has automatic 3d gyro and inertial stabilization built in. It'll hold well, even in gusty wind. Cool.
antialias_physorg
3.9 / 5 (7) Jun 13, 2013
Yep, that cold fusion could be good for personal planes.

So could pixie dust - and for precisely the same reason
(Though I think pixie dust is less of a health hazard? Have there been any studies on Peter Pan as to what side effects it has? It seems to be a potent anti-geriatric at first glance. And prolonged proximity to it seems to cause massive shrinkeage)
antialias_physorg
3.9 / 5 (7) Jun 13, 2013
You can buy the cold fusion device - but not the pixie dust. This makes a difference, don't you think?

Hmm. I just went to eBay and there are numerous offers for pixie dust.
And I'm pretty certain these products are every bit as effective at making planes fly as the one from the link you posted (and considerably cheaper).

It serves as a live memo of how the mainstream science failed - well, again.

So why haven't you bought one yet? Go on. Get rich. We wish you all the best of luck.
GSwift7
3 / 5 (2) Jun 13, 2013
From what I've seen, the E-cat doesn't look like it is designed to be light weight. It requires an outside input power supply, and the thermal unit needs heavy thermal shielding. Then you need some kind of thermal electricity generator, like a hydraulic turbine. That's not going to scale into a personal aircraft sized device very well. (assuming that it works as advertised)
ValeriaT
1 / 5 (7) Jun 13, 2013
Currently A.Rossi apparently doesn't want to invest into miniaturization for not to upset the centralized distributors of energy even more, then they already are. So that the E-Cat may look as A. Rossi wants right now - but I do believe, the whole principle can be quite miniaturized, if it works as described. I can imagine tiny E-Cats in mobile phones, for example. Solid-state thermoelectrical or thermoionic generators could be utilized there with reserve of hydrogen in lanthanum hydride, for example. After investments into proper miniaturization this technology could revolutionize the world, as we know it. We should still consider, that the ordinary scientists and inventors didn't touch research of fusion at all.
Go on. Get rich. We wish you all the best of luck.
Don't afraid, we're working on it...;-)
Neinsense99
3 / 5 (8) Jun 14, 2013
So could pixie dust - and for precisely the same reason
You http://hydrofusio...mw-plant device - but not the pixie dust. This makes a difference, don't you think? The cold fusion is a potent anti-ignorantium instead. It serves as a live memo of how the mainstream science failed - well, again.

That would be your comprehension of it failed -- again.
GSwift7
2.3 / 5 (3) Jun 14, 2013
From their perspective the COP ~ 6 (energy yield 600%) of Andrea Rossi looks completely realistic


The problem is that all the successful experiments of this type show none of the expected signatures of nuclear synthesis, so it must be a simple chemical reaction. This kind of enrgy yield is common. Light a stick of dynamite and you'll get way more than this (energy of a match to initiate the reaction and enrgy of the explosion in return).

Based on the chemicals he is using, this doesn't surprise me. Powered nickel is an ingredient in some explosives, and will explode when exposed to air or water. It takes a lot of energy to produce powdered nickel without oxydizing it (for micrometer sized pellets, strands or flakes), and you are just getting that energy back when you do what Rossi is doing. That would be my guess. If so, then you cannot make it available to the public because it's too dangerous.
ValeriaT
1 / 5 (5) Jun 14, 2013
BTW The construction of flying bicycles has a long tradition in Czech country (1, 2)...
ValeriaT
1 / 5 (5) Jun 14, 2013
all the successful experiments of this type show none of the expected signatures of nuclear synthesis, so it must be a simple chemical reaction
You apparently didn't study any of them. On the contrary, such an experiments routinely demonstrate the transmutation.
Powered nickel is an ingredient in some explosives, and will explode when exposed to air or water
You should learn some chemistry first Powdered nickel is produced in large quantities and it's completely stable at air or water. I have it in my lab too. Powdered nickel is not used in explosives, you're just inventing stuffs.
Doc Brown
Jun 14, 2013
This comment has been removed by a moderator.
ValeriaT
1.3 / 5 (6) Jun 15, 2013
Cold fusion, anti-gravity technology, and time travel are exclusively mine and you must desist in infringing upon my work
You shouldn't confuse the PO with reddit, facebook and similar sites full of twaddlers, who are spending whole days just with attempting for silly jokes. It gets tiresome at times..
Q-Star
2.9 / 5 (10) Jun 15, 2013
You shouldn't confuse the PO with reddit, facebook and similar sites full of twaddlers, who are spending whole days just with attempting for silly jokes.


It never occurred to me before, but ya have to admit that much of the scientific ideas ya promote do seem to come right out of the "Back To The Future" series.

It gets tiresome at times..


Indeed ya do, indeed ya do.
technodiss
not rated yet Jun 17, 2013
if they ditched the bike part, they would really have something there.
antialias_physorg
1 / 5 (2) Jun 17, 2013
Interestingly there is right now another article on physorg that highlights a cool use of what they built.
http://phys.org/n...und.html

Think about it: Each city has 100 (or 1000) of these things. Not with bikes, but just quadcopters with underslung nets.

In the case of a fire in a highrise people could be evacuated fom the roof one by one. For such an operation the individual quadcopter would not need to have a long flight time. Ten minutes might be enough (and the batteries could be swapped out on the ground immediately for the next trip).
GSwift7
2.3 / 5 (3) Jun 17, 2013
You should learn some chemistry first Powdered nickel is produced in large quantities and it's completely stable at air or water. I have it in my lab too. Powdered nickel is not used in explosives, you're just inventing stuffs


That is incorrect.

You are probably thinking of a nickel alloy or nickel oxide, and it's probably in a relatively coarse grain size. When you process pure nickel into extremely fine grain sizes, like micrometer or nanomoeter size beads, flakes or crystals, it is extremely dangerous. When processing this material it is usually conveyed in a sealed system with an intert medium gas like nitrogen, and all the electrical systems, lighting, fork lifts, employee clothing and shoes, etc, is designed to resist static discharge.

Nickel in a detonator explosive: http://onlinelibr...abstract

You should also look up the MSDS sheet on nickel, just google it. As far as I know, all metal powder is explosive at small grain size.
antialias_physorg
1 / 5 (1) Jun 18, 2013
Damnit. Contacted them about transforming the system into a rescue-bot for skyscrapers. Reply was that they're already in the advanced planning stages for that.
GSwift7
1 / 5 (1) Jun 20, 2013
Damnit. Contacted them about transforming the system into a rescue-bot for skyscrapers


Hobby grade remote control helicopters and multirotors are commonly equipped with gps systems these days (if you're doing aerial photography, you might have 1000's of dollars of camera on it), and they can be programmed to automatically return to their starting point. A building evacuation system could be programmed in this manner to make repeated trips up and down. Some remote control drones also have built in object avoidance systems. All of that hardware is available in packages small and light enough to fit on a circuit board smaller than a credit card.

Note: Aircraft with fixded pitch rotors, like the bike shown above, stall very easily when going down. If you wanted your building evac system to get you down quickly you would want variable pitch rotors, which very quickly adds mechanical complexity, weight, and cost.

I think a simple trolley system would be better.

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