The Kitty Hawk Electric Solo Flyer just might garner the accolades of being the first to make personal flight accessible to all. Named for the famous site where Orville and Wilbur Wright famously flew their Wright Flyer and became the first to successfully fly a heavier-than-air powered aircraft, the Kitty Hawk has its own qualities that will help it write history.
The design is simple enough. The cockpit resembles a one-man bobsled. From the cockpit, four arms reach out to what look like pontoons. Three propellers sit atop those pontoons, and the arms extend out farther to allow for yet another two propellers. In total, the Kitty Hawk has 10 propellers. It has the same basic shape as you might expect to see with a quadcopter or drone, but with the obvious difference being that it is much, much larger.
The Kitty Hawk is auto-stabilized and controlled with two simple controls. The motors are completely electric and are powered by lithium polymer batteries. Computer controls make the flying intuitive, so no need for extensive training. The composite material makes the Kitty Hawk lightweight and aerodynamic. Additionally, it’s waterproof—which is a good thing considering that for now it’s restricted to flying over water.
The Kitty Hawk was the project of Sikorsky prize winner and Guinness world record holder Todd Reichert. While the Wrights may have been first in flight, Reichert may go down as the one making flight possible for all.