- Technology gone wild as Peter Ternström turns drones into personal flight machines.
- Peter Ternström’s childhood dream of creating a sci-fi-style flying machine became a reality when he co-founded Jetson, a personal aircraft resembling the Endor speeder from “Return of the Jedi.”
- The evolution of drones, initially mere toys, into sophisticated, self-stabilizing devices paved the way for the development of “electrical vertical takeoff and landing” (eVTOL) vehicle.
Technology runs wild as Peter Ternström turns drones into personal flight machines.
Since his childhood days in Sweden, Peter Ternström nurtured a dream of creating a sci-fi-style flying machine. Back in 1983, he was captivated by “Return of the Jedi,” watching it five times and yearning to zip through the Endor forest on a levitating speeder.
As a bright young nerd, he quickly grasped that a hovering vehicle was beyond reach due to the lack of a viable propulsion system.
“There was no propulsion system that worked,” he recalls with a sigh.
Peter Ternström turns drones into personal flight machines
When drones first entered the mainstream in the 2000s, they were rudimentary and challenging to operate, with short battery lives. Yet, as demand grew, so did the quality of drone components.
Motors improved, batteries became more durable, and tilt sensors became affordable and high-quality. Open-source coders even developed software that made drones self-stabilizing and easy to fly with zero training.
In 2012, Peter Ternström reunited with a friend who had been using drones for Hollywood movie production. As he watched these drones in action, Ternström had a realization: Why not create a large drone with a seat to carry a human?
So, together with his partner, he founded Jetson, a company now offering its first model of a bona fide hovering personal aircraft called the Jetson ONE.
This $92,000 contraption is constructed from lightweight aluminum and carbon fiber, equipped with eight drone propellers and numerous batteries. In promotional videos, Ternström effortlessly glides above the Italian countryside, resembling the Endor speeder of his childhood dreams.
“It is a profoundly ecstatic experience,” Ternström enthuses. Jetson already has 320 pre-orders, primarily from high-profile Californians, aiming to start deliveries by the end of 2023.
Ternström is among the pioneers of drone-style flying machines for sale, but he is not alone. Worldwide, numerous companies are producing “electrical vertical takeoff and landing” (eVTOL) vehicles with the goal of introducing and enhancing urban mobility.
Unlike traditional planes, eVTOLs require no runway and rely heavily on software for guidance, making piloting skills almost irrelevant.
These eVTOLs have evolved from the tinkering of hobbyists and enthusiasts, a reminder that groundbreaking innovations often arise from unconventional sources.
Many envision a future where flying cars become commonplace, thanks to these big drones, which Chris Anderson, COO of eVTOL firm Kittyhawk, aptly describes.
Talented Nigerian boy builds high-flying drone using locally-sourced items
In other news, a young Nigerian boy has made headlines after building a high-flying drone using locally-sourced items.
The boy, identified as Aliyu Damilola, an indigene of Kwara state, said he is happy that his years of hard work has finally paid off.
He added that he is overjoyed that his work and talent is attracting the attention of the world.