Flying like a bird

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I did it! This weekend I brought out my wings again for a second test. And here it is. Do I need to say more? Just watch the video

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Flapping mechanism by Pascal Martinelli

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Henryk, a frequent poster on my blog just sent me this video. It’s a wing mechanism by Pascal Martinelli. And I have to say it looks very promising. It would be interesting to see how this combines with my haptic controlling system.

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First test with wings!

The wings did their job! The stakes were high for me, so I was disappointed that I only made a tiny hop in the air. But it worked!

While I was getting bored with the bad weather, I tried the wings in the factory floor below my workplace earlier. And that tiny pre-test proved that I could go outdoors to try the real thing. Although the weather this week didn’t look good at all! Yesterday in the afternoon the sun returned for just a couple of hours. So I prepared the wings with my crew a.s.a.p. and jumped in the van to the testinglocation.

Here it is guys. Enjoy!

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Location scouting

This weekend the weather was perfect! Dry but cool, slightly above freezing temperature, no wind, sunshine and crisp grass.

I feel ready for the first test with the wings! So I went out to check up on my three favorite locations in The Hague to see what possibilities I have to do the first trial runs. Unfortunately I forgot my camera, but thank god there is Google Earth.

Beach (Strand bij Duindorp)
Pros: unlimited space, soft fuzzy stuff to fall in, best with North or South wind, easy transport (parkinglot)
Cons: Too strong wind for my wings most of the day (would have to go realy early), sand might mess up the mechanical propulsion system.

Park Westbroek
Pros: grass, enough space for a little hop in the air, easy transport, best with North-North-West or South-South-East wind
Cons: water all around, trees, birds (how ironic that sounds!), dogpoo

Malieveld
Pros: dry grass, nice grip for shoes, best with South-West wind, easy transport
Cons: turbulence because of surrounding trees and forest on North East side, dogpoo, traffic (in case I succeed to take off

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Sharing my flying dream

Between the roasted lamb and tiramisu dessert on Christmas day something wonderful happened. TechCrunch supported my project by sharing the news on my human birdwings.

Here’s a short overview. Thanks to everybody for sharing! 

“If you could have one superpower, what would it be? Mind control would be my answer (I hope to be an evil genius when I grow up). But it seems the most popular answer to that question is the ability to fly. Jarnos Smeets, a mechanical engineer from the Netherlands, is working really hard to make that a reality.”TechCrunch (24th dec)


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Moving my birdwings

Some time ago I connected the acceleration sensors of the HTC and Wii remote (and check this blogpost too for explanation). The next step was to send this acceleration data to my electronic speed controllers and outrunner motors. Floor and me went testing the system yesterday, watch the result below. I’m very proud of this.

So check out the photogallery and the video below. Also decided to attach an earlier sketch of the system, although it’s kind of a wild sketch, I think this explains what I did and how it works.

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