“Flyboard” across the Channel

A hundred and ten years ago in the month of July Frenchman Louis Bleriot made the first trip across the English Channel in an aeroplane. It was a historic moment for the aviation industry. This year entrepreneur Franky Zapata decided to use the landmark date for his attempt to cross the channel on his “Flyboard.”

The Flyboard is a jet- powered hovercraft that can reach speeds of 190 kilometers per hour. It was also on display on the 14 July military parade which was presided over in Paris by the French President Emmanuel Macron. Franky Zapta successfully flew down the Champs-Elysees boulevard during the annual Bastille Day parade.

Amidst concerns from local maritime authorities, Franky , a former jet-ski champion, set off from the beach at Sangatte, near Calais. It would always be challenging crossing especially considering the windy day. He wanted to cross over in 20 minutes, however it was not possible for him to maintain the 140 km/hr speed to cover the distance of 35 km.

There was considerable fanfare at the beach when he departed and disappeared from view. It was announced shortly after that he had failed the attempt and landed in the water. Now he’s working on the science project to be able to refuel midway and make a successful crossing.

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