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First Human-Powered Ornithopter Flight Recorded by Canadian

Man records first sustained ornithopter flight.
A University of Toronto engineering graduate student recently set a new world record for man-powered flight. According to Physorg, Todd Reichert flew an ornithopter -- an aircraft that flaps its wings like a bird -- over a field in Tottenham, Ontario, Canada for about 19.3 seconds at 16 mph. It's the first recorded, sustained, man-powered ornithopter flight in history. Reichert filed a claim for the record in August, and expects the Federation Aeronautique Internationale (FAI) to confirm it in October. The 'Snowbird,' which is constructed from carbon fiber and balsa wood, weighs just 94 pounds and has a 104-foot wingspan -- just six feet shorter than that of a Boeing 737. Of course, this is about the least practical form of air transportation we've seen. (Okay, maybe flugtag is a less practical way to fly.) Still, the video (after the break) reveals the lightweight aircraft's massive wings flapping as the sun rises in the background.

Tags: aircraft, canada, engineering, flight, flying, green, ornithopter, record, snowbird, top, transportation, WorldRecord