OSHKOSH, Wis., July 31, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Yves 'Jetman' Rossy, the world's first jet-powered man, thrilled crowds during his first public flight in the United States at the EAA AirVenture Oshkosh fly-in, supported by his sponsor, the luxury Swiss watch manufacturer Breitling. Outfitted in his custom-designed Jet-wing, Jetman soared over the crowds free as a bird, reaching speeds of 190 mph.
"It's thrilling to do my first public flight for such an enthusiastic crowd and be a part of the biggest aviation gathering in the world, and I look forward to the rest of my flights this week," said Rossy, 54, shortly after his flight. "I have been pursuing my dream of flying in the most natural possible form for many years, and I am always experimenting to get as close as possible to that goal. By being a part of this highly-regarded and world-famous aviation event, I'm sharing with this audience of enthusiasts, fans, and young people that it's possible to push the frontiers of aviation."
Rossy continues, "It's gratifying to be so well-received and to have so many fans here supporting my efforts and witnessing the new technologies I've developed. EAA AirVenture highlights how experimental projects like mine can encourage aviation innovation."
Using a carbon-Kevlar® jetwing with four engines, each of is which capable of a 22 kg thrust, the Swiss aviator was able to propel himself through the skies at upwards of 190 mph, controlled by a simple throttle in his hand. The rest of the controls were left to the human fuselage -- Rossy himself -- who simply used his shoulders, body and legs to steer, pitch and descend. This forward-thinking technology has allowed Rossy to achieve many outstanding feats, including soaring above Rio de Janeiro, completing aerobatics from the Breitling Orbiter Balloon, crossing the English Channel and flying in formation with the Breitling Jet Team, Warbirds and passenger aircraft.
For a watch brand synonymous with aviation and a visionary aviator with the mind of a pilot and the desire to soar through the air like a bird, Oshkosh is an ideal place to celebrate the past, present and future of flight.
"Breitling is delighted to support Jetman as he takes to the skies in the United States for the first time in public," said Breitling U.S.A. President Thierry Prissert. "Breitling has deep roots in aviation and Jetman is an aviation pioneer, so the partnership is very natural. To see Jetman fly through the air with nothing but his Jet-wing and push the limits of human flight is truly incredible, and we're thrilled to be able to bring him to Oshkosh so attendees can see him for his first public flight."
Yves Rossy flew in formation with a vintage B-17 'Flying Fortress' as part of his preparation for his flights at Oshkosh, with select VIP's and guests of EAA and Breitling onboard the historical aircraft.
In addition to the premiere flight, Jetman is scheduled for additional EAA AirVenture performances on Thursday, August 1; Saturday, August 3; and Sunday, August 4.
"Jetman is a perfect example of the innovation displayed each year by those who participate at Oshkosh," said Jack J. Pelton, chairman of the Experimental Aircraft Association, the event's organizing group. "Our founder Paul Poberezny calls it 'using hand and mind' to explore the sky. Jetman and Breitling have brought a wonderful addition to this year's event."
Date of birth: 27 August 1959
Home: Bex, Switzerland
Flying CV: Fighter pilot, airline captain, Jetman
Yves Rossy first started developing the Jetman project in 1993 and in 2008 completed the first significant Jetman feat by crossing the English Channel. In 2010 the Swiss watchmaker Breitling joined as the main sponsor and the joint venture has continued to achieve many aviation firsts.
ABOUT BREITLING: Leon Breitling founded the company in 1884 in St. Imier, Switzerland. Breitling is the world's only major watch brand to equip all its models with chronometer-certified movements, the ultimate token of precision. With its manufacture of the Caliber 01, Breitling has created the most reliable and accurate of all self-winding chronograph movements, its quality guaranteed by an unprecedented five-year warranty offered on all pieces equipped with the in-house movement. The chronographs are produced entirely by Breitling in their own workshops, and are chronometer-certified by the Swiss Official Chronometer Testing Institute (COSC). This amazing accomplishment has further established Breitling as the absolute benchmark in the field of mechanical chronographs. Breitling is one of very few companies to produce, develop and manufacture their own mechanical chronograph movement in-house. This family business is also one of the last remaining independent Swiss watch brands.
Video with caption: "Yves "Jetman" Rossy soars over the crowd at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh during his first public flight in the U.S. Video courtesy of Mike Shore/ Breitling." Video available at: http://origin-qps.onstreammedia.com/origin/multivu_archive/PRNA/ENR/FX-MM56368-20130731-1.mp4
Image with caption: "Yves "Jetman" Rossy flies over EAA AirVenture Oshkosh. Photo by Mike Shore, courtesy of Breitling SA." Image available at: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130731/MM56368-a
Image with caption: "Yves "Jetman" Rossy takes to the skies with a B-17. Photo by Andre Bernet, courtesy of Breitling SA." Image available at: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130731/MM56368-b
Image with caption: "Yves "Jetman" Rossy. Photo by Mike Shore, courtesy of Breitling SA." Image available at: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130731/MM56368-c
Image with caption: "Yves "Jetman" Rossy greets fans after his first public flight in the U.S. Photo by Mike Shore, courtesy of Breitling SA." Image available at: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130731/MM56368-d