A new competition to encourage innovators to create a safe and easy-to-use personal flying device was launched on 27 September at one of aerospace industry’s premiere engineering technology conferences, according to a press release. Gwen Lighter, CEO of The GoFly Prize opened registration for the competition at the SAE 2017 AeroTech Congress & Exhibition. The two-year competition, managed by GoFly with Boeing as Grand Sponsor, encourages teams from around the world to leverage recent advances in propulsion, energy, light-weight materials, and control and stability systems to make the dream of personal flight a reality. Total prize money of $2 million will be awarded to the most innovative teams. The teams will be challenged to create a personal flying device that can be used by anyone, anywhere. GoFly is calling upon the world’s greatest thinkers, designers, engineers, inventors and builders to construct safe, ultra-compact, quiet, urban-compatible, personal flying devices capable of carrying a person 20 miles without refueling or recharging with vertical, or near vertical take-off and landing capability. GoFly will provide teams with access to experienced mentors and masters in design, engineering, finance, law, and marketing, but the ultimate design and functionality of the device will be up to the imagination of the competitors.
“There is perhaps no dream more universal than the dream of human flight. GoFly is going to make that dream a reality,” Lighter said. “GoFly is a shift towards embracing innovative solutions to expand the desire to explore the unknown and push ourselves to new heights. Today we look to the sky and say ‘look at that plane fly’, but two years from now, we’ll look up and say ‘look at that person fly.’”
“The GoFly Prize competition aligns with our company’s goals of inspiring people across the globe and changing the world through aerospace innovation,” said Boeing Chief Technology Officer Greg Hyslop. “We’re excited to see how the visionaries of the future will take on this ambitious and exciting challenge.” Competition prizes will be awarded in three phases: Phase I will include ten $20,000 prizes awarded based on written technical specifications; Phase II will include four $50,000 prizes awarded to teams with the best prototypes and revised Phase I materials; and Phase III will unveil the Grand Prize Winner, awarded at the Final Fly-Off in the fall of 2019. The first registration deadline for teams participating in Phase I is 4 April 2018, followed by a Phase II registration deadline of 8 December 2018.
For more information about The GoFly Prize, or to sign up for the competition, one can visit: http://www.goflyprize.com.