Canaveral Junior

Wallops Island gets ready for the big time

(NASA Wallops Flight Facility)

The Whirligig


Among the research projects at Wallops in the early 1950s was the Jet Board, used to demonstrate that a person could fly while standing on a platform supported only by a jet of air. A later version, shown here in the Instrumentation Laboratory shop at Wallops in 1953, replaced the direct air jet with a two-blade rotor driven by small air jets at each blade tip. They called it the “Whirligig.” It flew successfully, but never went into production.


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