Intro: Redbull Flugtag Ornithopter
Back in 2006, Redbull organised the event 'The Redbull Flugtag" in Rotterdam. I thought it would be a fun idea to drop myself into the river Maas with a self-build construction. So did a few of my colleagues and team Daedalus was born!
At the time I gave a workshop building model ornithopters with a k-12 class so I designed an ornithopter in Rhino 3D. The flapping wings, off-course, where merely a gimmick. After a few weeks of building after schooldays and weekends my colleagues and me made 'The Paradise-bird", named so because of the colors. Since I work in a vocational school we had some very capable men and woman around who weld a sturdy aluminium construction and sewing the tail-wing. The wings where made out off surf-sail rig which was sponsored by local, former Olympic windsurf champ, Stephan van de Berg.
I was a bummer that on the day of the event it was very rainy and windy and the organisation preferred a good sight for the public in stead of good circumstances for the planes to fly. So they put the launching platform away from the wind instead of putting it towards it. I'm convinced that my dive would have been lengthened into a glide otherwise.
A well, it was still a fun day never to forget! I will add a short video of my dive here, as soon it is uploaded to youtube. I've to rip it of the dvd from the event.