The Pursuit of Personal FlightS

The photo you're looking at is of Swiss pilot Yvess Rossy, aka "Jetman," piloting a jet-powered, six-foot-wide, carbon-fiber wing of his own invention. Rossy's personal jet craft is considered by many to represent the pinnacle of humanity's endeavors to achieve personal flight — the ultimate realization of a dream that has driven human innovation for centuries.

National Geographic's Nancy Shute has written an excellent feature on the history of our pursuit of personal flight, from DaVinci's meticulous drawings of bird physiology, to MIT's human-powered Daedalus, to Yvess Rossy's 8-minute, rocket-propelled flight over the Grand Canyon.

Shute's piece captures not just how far the dream of personal flight has come, but what we have to look forward to in the future, and is definitely worth the read.

[Via National Geographic]
Top image via
Hat tip to Laura!