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French inventor Franky Zapata, creator of a jet-powered hoverboard that can go more than 100 miles-per-hour, will attempt to fly across the English Channel for the second time in a week.
Known as the "Flyman," Zapata is attempting to fly across the channel to commemorate the 110th anniversary of the first airplane flight across the Channel. Zapata told LeParisien flying across the Channel with a jet-powered hoverboard is the realization of a dream but said he's stressed out as he prepares for the flight Sunday.
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'Flyman' to Try Second Attempt in Days
Last week Zapata failed to cross, crashing into the English Channel after missing the landing for refueling. The inventor was uninjured and undeterred. This time around Zapata and his team plan to use a larger boat for the refueling landing.
Zapata will have to stop halfway through the twenty-minute flight to refuel. The Koresene tank worn on Zapata's back to power the Flyboard can only last about ten minutes in the air at an average speed of 87 miles-per-hour. The Flyboard can reach top speeds of as much as 118 miles-per-hour.
The inventor made headlines earlier in the year when he showed off the Flyboard during a Bastille Day demonstration. But crossing the English Channel will require more work on the part of the machine. Zapata gives himself a 30% chance of succeeding, telling the LeParisien that the Bastille Day demonstration required 3% of the Flyboard's output and this will require 99%. Zapata had planned to refuel twice, once in England and once in France but because of an unfavorable ruling by the maritime prefecture is only refueling once.
Inventor Holds Title for Farthest Hoverboard Flight
Zapata already holds the title for the farthest flight by hoverboard, flying 2,252.4 m or 7,389 ft 9 in 2016. His jet-powered hoverboard was able to beat the record by close to 2 km. If he succeeds he will become the first man to ever cross the English channel by a jet-powered hoverboard.