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Human Powered Helicopter - Armchair Engineers Welcome!

Oct. 23, 2012, 11:59 a.m.
Posts: 4300
Joined: June 24, 2010

Q: What is 100 feet across, weighs 80 pounds, and probably costs more than the $250,000 prize its makers are chasing?

A: The human powered helicopter.

flickr

Oct. 23, 2012, 12:09 p.m.
Posts: 569
Joined: Feb. 14, 2006

Was watching that yesterday. Super impressive. I am sure they will get it someday. Hard to believe that there are no flight controls.

Where do you think the $250000 goes if they win?

Oct. 23, 2012, 12:51 p.m.
Posts: 565
Joined: Oct. 28, 2008

Hookers and blow. Obviously.

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Oct. 23, 2012, 1:36 p.m.
Posts: 2313
Joined: Sept. 18, 2008

very cool!

(looks like a trek)

Oct. 23, 2012, 2:06 p.m.
Posts: 101
Joined: Feb. 4, 2007

They just need Lance and some EPO.

Oct. 23, 2012, 3:13 p.m.
Posts: 3715
Joined: March 6, 2003

A Track Cyclist and Flight controls.

Power + Control = Victory

I also see spots where they can drill out some more styrofoam ;-)

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Oct. 23, 2012, 3:16 p.m.
Posts: 4449
Joined: Feb. 22, 2003

throw Sam Whittingham in there and you'd be flying in no time…

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Oct. 23, 2012, 3:18 p.m.
Posts: 4300
Joined: June 24, 2010

You can see that the pilots eventually start to lose the smoothness of their stroke, and I think that contributes to the instability on descent. Cool engineering problem, though!

flickr

Oct. 23, 2012, 4:46 p.m.
Posts: 23
Joined: Aug. 10, 2011

Cool… A centre of gravity shift type of control like a hang glider might be the answer.

Oct. 23, 2012, 5:22 p.m.
Posts: 4983
Joined: Dec. 6, 2002

Most cyclists are trained to have smooth pedal strokes with their feet not their hands, and especially not both at the same time.

Time to find a way to multiply what is happening with the feet and eliminate the hand crank system.

Maybe a fitter stronger human of similar weight?

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Oct. 23, 2012, 5:51 p.m.
Posts: 0
Joined: Dec. 7, 2006

Put the rider on top of the pedals so he can use his weight to his advantage. Recumbents are good for cutting through the wind but they are crappy hill climbers.

Oct. 23, 2012, 8:16 p.m.
Posts: 704
Joined: March 15, 2004

Perhaps a brake on each rotor to limit it's lift in relation to the others, controlled by a gyroscope or even an ipod touch accelerometer with software to control the braking - like traction control only… lift control… yeah. Loose the hand crank thing, gear it up and use upper body power through the legs with something to grip. And obviously Lance needs a new job.

Oct. 23, 2012, 8:16 p.m.
Posts: 6104
Joined: June 14, 2008

They need to tether it until they figure out how to keep it from drifting, silly engineers.

Oct. 23, 2012, 10:09 p.m.
Posts: 10010
Joined: March 11, 2003

what about using a rider spun flywheel/clutch?

Spin the shit out of it, and then let it spool up the rotors? then just pedal away to keep the flywheel reasonably charged for your min or whatever.

done.

Is there a Vancouver in Taiwan?! I had no idea!!

Nothing sums up my life's achievements like my stuffed corpse, suplexing a cougar.

Oct. 23, 2012, 10:15 p.m.
Posts: 6
Joined: Jan. 12, 2006

what about using a rider spun flywheel/clutch?

Spin the shit out of it, and then let it spool up the rotors? then just pedal away to keep the flywheel reasonably charged for your min or whatever.

done.

Flywheel's gonna be pretty damn heavy to store that kind of energy…

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