Who is jetpack guy spotted flying at LAX?September 2, 2020
AN UNIDENTIFIED man was spotted flying a jetpack near to an aircraft heading into Los Angeles International airport.
Two pilots on an American Airlines flight first reported a "guy in a jetpack" flying some 30 yards from their aircraft as it approached the runway on August 31.
Who is the man in a jetpack spotted at LAX?
Pilots on American Airlines flight AA1997 from Philadelphia into Los Angeles reported a "guy in a jetpack" flying close to their aircraft at the plane's altitude of 3,000 feet.
Shortly after, a JetBlue flight en route to LAX confirmed a sighting of the man to traffic control.
The Federal Aviation Administration said that "officials have alerted local law enforcement to the reports, and is looking into these reports."
The identity of the jetpack flyer is not yet known, though the FBI have opened an investigation into the incident.
Seth Young, a pilot and a professor of aviation at Ohio State University, told the New York Times it was "very dangerous" for the jetpack to fly so close to an aircraft.
He said: "The risk is obviously having a collision with that airplane or getting a drone, or the person getting ingested into an engine".
What is a jetpack?
A jet pack is a device worn on the back which propels a wearer through the air using jets of gas or liquid.
Jet packs use hydrogen peroxide as fuel.
The propellant, when mixed with nitrogen, produces a chemical reaction that results in pressurized steam.
This gives the jet pack its thrust.
The US army started to research jet pack technology in 1949 at Redstone Arsenal in Alabama.
But a working jetpack did not appear fully until Wendell Moore’s "Bell Rocket Belt" was tested in 1960, using a turbo jet, but it had a maximum air time of just 30 seconds.
Can you buy jetpacks in the US and what's the law on flying them?
Jet packs have long been a fascination for sci-fi fans, and provided a great stunt in action films.
But very little has been done to make the technology safe for commercial or recreational use.
While companies have produced jet packs, these are not available for individual recreational use over safety fears.
The Federal Aviation Administration has brought in restrictions around flying all objects – including drones- close to an aircraft or in commercial airspace, ABC reports.
Anyone wishing to do so must request authorization from the FAA.
California-based firm JetPack Aviation invented "the world's only jetpack" in 2015 – and they say it can reach 15,000 feet in altitude and stays airborne for 10 minutes.
However it cannot be used recreationally, and requires a three-week training course before flight – which can only be done in a regulated space.
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