Human always dreamt to fly like birds. This dream came into reality in forms of jets and planes, but now wingsuits seem to be more fun.

Wingsuit was first used by a 19 years Rex G Finney from Los Angeles, in America, and he aimed to increase horizontal movement and manoeuvrability during a parachute jump. Early wingsuits used materials such as canvas, wood, silk, steel, and whalebone etc. Earlier wingsuits were also known as death suits, but upgradation, research, innovation and modern technology made it safer.

As we need a driving test and licence before drive, one needs flight course and has to prove with a signed logbook that he/she has completed a minimum of 200 skydives within the last 18 months and has earnt a USPA B-license. A wingsuiter can fly at minimum average vertical speed of 25 Mph and horizontal speed of 220 Mph which is really well controlled compared to skydivers.

BMW released wingsuit in November 2020 and it has a motorised wingsuit with advance options. This fully electric wingsuit has 20 HP with 5-inch diameter twin carbon fibre impellers spinning at 25000 rpm, weighing only 12 kgs and powered by 50V BMW Lithium-Ion battery. A test flight has been done by Peter Salzmann after he tested his inventions in a horizontal wind tunnel in Stockholm, Sweden and then another test flight over Austrian Alpines at the speed of 115 Mph. BMW has been working on the idea since 2017 and the project generated two prototype engine systems, one large and one small.

It seems that in future, we can be one-man jet. So far, the landing technique of the wingsuit is the same as skydivers and a parachute is needed. But we hope it will soon be a smooth take-off and landing without the use of any parachutes.

By: Muhammad Umar