It’s Not A Bird, It’s Not A Plane – It’s A Jetman!
The Emirates A380 and the Jetman Dubai duo recently took to the skies of Dubai for an extraordinary formation flight which showcased just how far aviation has come. The formations were conducted over the Palm Jumeirah and Dubai skyline with Burj Khalifa in the background. It took painstaking planning and meticulous collaboration with an intense focus on safety drove all efforts and made the formation flight look effortless.
To mitigate the risk, the duo’s formation positions were carefully selected to avoid the areas of wake turbulence and jet efflux from the Emirates A380. During the planning stages, Emirates ensured the Jetman duo had proper visual reference points of the A380 so that both Jetmen could safely join and hold their choreographed positions. The Jetman team’s reference points were confirmed with flight simulation along with using visual orientations using actual A380 aircraft at the Emirates Engineering Centre. These helped to confirm that the proposed formations would work seamlessly from the first flight.
To keep pace with the aircraft and fly in formation, the duo had to push the small jetpack engines to their limits, meaning they could fly for no longer than 10 minutes at a time. With this small window to work in, the footage shows Rossy and Reffet in a series of tight holding patterns on either side of the plane before finally breaking away to (relative) safety.
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Daredevil Yves Rossy has never been afraid to think big when it comes to high-altitude stuntwork, but when it comes to wingmen, it doesn’t come any bigger than this.