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Watch > Episode > Yves Rossy - Fly High

Yves Rossy - Fly High

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Yves Rossy is a Swiss military-trained pilot and an aviation enthusiast. He is known as the inventor of a series of experimental individual jet packs, the latest using carbon-fibre wings for flight.
Known as the “Jetman,” Yves has captured the world’s imagination with his daring and innovative flights using a jet-powered wing. Often described as a real-life superhero, Rossy has pushed the boundaries of human flight, showcasing the possibilities of combining aviation and cutting-edge technology. This groundbreaking London Real conversation between Yves and host Brian Rose covers a number of topics including what he learned about himself from the delayed flight across the English Channel, the wow moment of jet-powered flight and his admiration for military test pilots.

Born on August 27, 1959, in Neuchâtel, Switzerland, Yves Rossy developed a passion for aviation at a young age. He pursued a career as a military pilot in the Swiss Air Force, where he flew various aircraft, honing his skills and gaining invaluable experience in the world of aviation. Rossy’s early career laid the foundation for the audacious endeavours that would define his later life.

Yves Rossy’s most notable invention is the jet-powered wing, a technological marvel that allows him to fly through the air like a human jet. The wing, equipped with four jet engines, is worn as a backpack, and Rossy uses his body movements to control the flight. This groundbreaking invention has positioned him as a pioneer in the field of personal aviation.


In 2008, Yves Rossy achieved a historic milestone by becoming the first person to fly across the English Channel using a jet-powered wing. Launching from a small aircraft, Rossy soared through the skies, covering the 22-mile distance in under 10 minutes. The successful solo flight captured global attention, earning him acclaim for his daring feat and innovative approach to personal flight.

Building on his initial success, Yves Rossy has continued to push the boundaries of what was thought possible in personal aviation. He engaged in formation flights alongside other aircraft, creating breathtaking aerial displays that showcased the precision and control achievable with his jet-powered wing. Rossy’s stunt performances at air shows and events around the world further solidified his reputation as a trailblazer in aviation.

In 2009, Yves Rossy embarked on an ambitious project to attempt a transatlantic crossing from Europe to North America using his jet-powered wing. Although the attempt faced technical challenges and was ultimately unsuccessful, it demonstrated Rossy’s unwavering commitment to exploring new frontiers in aviation. The daring venture showcased the audacity and determination that define his approach to personal flight.

Yves Rossy’s journey in personal aviation has been characterised by continuous innovation and technological advancements. Over the years, he has refined and upgraded his jet-powered wing, incorporating improvements to enhance performance, safety, and manoeuvrability. Rossy’s commitment to pushing the technological envelope has inspired a new generation of aviation enthusiasts and inventors.

Yves Rossy’s contributions to personal aviation extend beyond the physical feats he has accomplished. His innovative spirit and fearlessness have inspired individuals worldwide to dream big and pursue unconventional paths in their own fields. Rossy’s legacy lies not only in his remarkable flights but also in the inspiration he provides to those who dare to imagine the extraordinary.

While Yves Rossy’s flights have captured the world’s admiration, they come with inherent risks. The challenges of flying at high speeds with a jet-powered wing require precise control and extensive training. Rossy’s endeavors underscore the importance of calculated risk-taking and the continuous pursuit of excellence in the face of adversity.

Yves Rossy’s journey from a military pilot to the “Jetman” exemplifies the intersection of passion, innovation, and human ingenuity. His jet-powered wing has not only redefined personal aviation but has also sparked imaginations and inspired a sense of wonder about the possibilities that lie beyond the skies. Yves Rossy’s legacy continues to soar, leaving an indelible mark on the history of aviation and encouraging future generations to reach for the skies and beyond.

Chapters

00:00 | Trailer
02:37 Brian’s thoughts on the episode
05:06 Brian’s Introduction
05:59 What concerned Yves for his first flight over the English Channel in 2008
10:07 What Yves learned about himself from the delayed flight across the English Channel
10:52 Why a clear head and relaxed body are essential
13:15 Difference in the way Yves and his partner Vincent Reffet use their bodies in flight
14:54 Yves’ early emotional response to witnessing the power of a jet plane
17:55 The WOW feeling from flying jet aircraft aged twenty, sometimes difficult to come down from
22:47 Yves admiration for the military test pilots and first astronauts depicted in The Right Stuff film
26:10 Did those pilots feel the attraction to the challenge as Yves has to his
27:58 747 emergency, Yves a trained fighter pilot, feels the pressure of responsibility for passengers
31:30 How Yves loves moments of freedom playing with nature
34:00 Yves has so much respect for nature
36:27 Learning to adapt to the air becoming fluid which reacts with speed
40:30 An understanding wife
42:17 The developmental history of flying man
45:24 Yves trialling of wingsuit flying and developing his own ideas
47:24 Why are the military and aerospace companies not involved in this development work
48:42 Development work is costing him, but in his eyes he is the richest guy in the world
50:37 “I was never in competition, always in creation
“54:41 What has happened since Yves flew across the English Channel on an inflatable wing in 2008
1:00:32 Yves’ most frightening flight experience
1:09:28 Why he finally decided to return to flying
1:11:44 The beginning of the complementary partnership with Vincent Reffet
1:16:51 What we can learn from Yves about being an innovator and the danger of a financial goal
1:22:08 The Dubai flight
1:23:05 The highly dangerous cons and financial pros of future plan to be autonomous
1:27:06 Still deriving lots of fun from flying and research and gratification from passing on knowledge
1:27:45 Keeping in good shape, Yves fitness regime and how he clears his mind prior to a flight
1:29:36 The parts played by Bruno Bokker, Thomas Enders and his Highness Sheikh Hamdan Crown Prince of Dubai in the Dubai flight
1:32:54 Learning to avoid aircraft turbulence for the Dubai flight
1:36:51 Crying and shouting with emotion at the beauty when flying over Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
1:39:32 For how long will Yves continue to fly
1:40:07 Crash landing onto water during the flight in Malta
1:44:30 Working and living in Dubai
1:48:04 Next planned high profile flight and Yves gratitude for this opportunity to explain how they are not crazy guys
1:49:24 The difference in the machines he requires to those with another purpose for flight
1:52:30 Success secrets
1:53:32 Brian tells Yves he needs to write his book for us
1:54:44 Phone call to the 20 year old Yves Rossy
1:57:30 Best advice Yves ever received
1:58:38 Advice to the young people watching wanting to succeed in what they want to do
2:02:11 Brian’s summing up.

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