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Viral video shows two RC helicopters lifting a woman in the air

By Shawn Knight
Mar 4, 2014
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  1. Amazon's idea of employing drones to deliver packages to your doorstep might not be so far-fetched after all if the latest viral video is to be believed. A German group by the name of HeliGraphix recently published a clip that...

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  2. CJ100570

    CJ100570 TS Rookie Posts: 18

    It's most definitely fake. I've been flying RC helicopters, electric/nitro, for decades and none are powerful enough to pick up a full grown adult. Not even in tandem.
     
  3. 9Nails

    9Nails TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,212   +174

    Whoa - that looks real. That's some crazy power those helicopters have. That woman is super brave!
     
  4. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,476   +2,034

    I don't believe it, not for a second and definitely not with those 2 itty bitty RC copters. It looks more like a publicity stunt to me. That said, even if it were real I wouldn't mind finding a parcel like that waiting for me on my doorstep. :D
     
  5. wastedkill

    wastedkill TS Evangelist Posts: 1,389   +329

    For $14k anyone could do same you just need 2 semi-real-helicopter engines to get it working and 40seconds is tiny but if you compare it to the kind of stuff these guys did it matches up perfectly I say real and can be done pretty easily with money as shown above...
     
  6. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,476   +2,034

    Nonsense. Those chopper rotors are just too small irrespective of how powerful the motors are. It just defies physics.
     
    trgz likes this.
  7. NicktheWVAHick

    NicktheWVAHick TS Enthusiast Posts: 69   +43

    I wish my wife weighed that much.
     
    davislane1 and wastedkill like this.
  8. TomSEA

    TomSEA TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,558   +598

    LOL @ NicktheWVAHick.

    I think it's real. Those aren't the little dinky helicopters you buy online for $20. Those are BIG rotors for the sized vehicle and for anyone who is into r/c modeling, relatively big engines too.
     
    wastedkill likes this.
  9. Enthusiast

    Enthusiast TS Rookie

    Can't comment on the authenticity of the video, but relative to the achievement: doesn't the US Army already operate drone helicopters capable of carrying hundreds of pounds? I thought they used them in Afghanistan to do high-danger resupply.

    Also thought the US Navy had drone helicopters for similars...but might be stretching on that one.

    Side note - very jealous of anyone with RC control anything... I really really want to build a flyable platform for my cameras (as well as submersible platform!). Crash and burn with an old go-pro...no biggie.
     
  10. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Evangelist Posts: 3,541   +2,337

    The drones employed by the military are much, much larger than the R/C toys in the video.
     
  11. 9Nails

    9Nails TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,212   +174

    I can't come right out and call it fake. It most definitely is unbelievable! I tried some Google searches for RC Helicopter lift specifications and found some documentation which show up to 25 lbs. But from the youtube video's, it appears that these men have been working to this point for a few months. I'll have to give them credit for giving us multiple camera angles if it is indeed a fake. But I'm leaning towards believing that it's real.

     
  12. hellokitty[hk]

    hellokitty[hk] Hello, nice to meet you! Posts: 3,435   +145

    In other news, check out Huvr hype too.
    I think this one at least, is pretty doable though.
     
  13. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 6,476   +2,034

    I fully agree that they're not your $20 Walmart specials and I'm not doubting the power of the engines but if you look at the diameter of the rotors, they are way too small to lift a person even in tandem. If there were four of them it would be more believable but not much.
    I flew RC 1/10th scale RC choppers, fixed wing planes and gliders for years and there is no way the choppers could even remotely come close to lifting any serious weight like an adult person. Even the 1/10th scale Chinooks with their twin rotors could only lift a max of 15 lbs more than their own weight. It's not so much to do with the power of the motors but the size of the rotors. If this video is authentic then I'll eat humble pie.
     
  14. kozmik

    kozmik TS Rookie

    When you see "made in germany" you know it's legit
     
  15. bing bing

    bing bing TS Rookie

    I think a few of you are going to be eating humble Pie I say very real .. also don't go by the size or diameter of the motor alone to say if it has the power to lift a person .. there are a lot of variables here. the weight of the person the batteries used the motor / gearing and the blades. each blade is 700mm if not bigger couldn't tell but when you do the math your talking about two 4.5 foot disk lifting someone.. I own a heli 600 size helis and im sure two can do the job to pull and lift someone ..of course within a reasonable weight.
     
  16. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 11,684   +1,877

    No, it's far fetched. Have you ever heard of the FAA? Do you know what a "TCA" (terminal control area) is.

    Military "drones" should be capable of lifting a model. But, those are fixed wing aircraft. As such, they would be markedly unsuitable for STOL on your average city streets.

    Now, if you want to "surface to ground" a package through the customers front window, liability be damned, a loitering drone would be a worthy launch platform.

    Then, all Amazon would need is local "spotters", to light up the customer's house with a LASER.

    If anybody cares, military "Harriers", are normally launched from a runway. British aircraft carriers have a "ski jump", type addition to the end of the deck. Why? Because launching a Harrier vertically, is massively "fuelish"!

    Helicopters have some of the lowest hourly service intervals in all of aviation. The smaller an engine is, the shorter time to a complete teardown. For example, "Rotax" two stroke engines, which are used in ultra light aircraft, (and in snowmobiles), have a 200 hour to tear down permitted service interval.

    Even the Lycoming and Continental piston engines in standard light planes, are only 2000 hours to tear down.

    So, (IMHO, of course), your video is a fake, and Amazon's CEO, is talking out his A**.

    Dude, if the batteries go dead in 40 seconds, the helo(s) in question couldn't possibly travel any distance with "XX" cargo. You'd need to run an extension cord from your friendly local power substation, ,to keep it airborne for any length of time.

    So realistically, this whole story is reminiscent of, "the woman who lifted an automobile of of her child". Yeah, it can be done, but not for very long.

    You might be the one having pie with dinner this evening.

    Once upon a time, one of these would go ungodly fast, and pull an ungodly amount of freight. Crank down those pantographs, or forget to pay the electric bill, you got yourself the world's largest paperweight.
    [​IMG]

    So I know "now all we have to do is design more efficient batteries", "the better mousetrap", or ask the Romulans if they'd be willing to share the singularity technology which powers their warp drives with us..:p
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2014
  17. bing bing

    bing bing TS Rookie

    Dude, if the batteries go dead in 40 seconds, the helo(s) in question couldn't possibly travel any distance with "XX" cargo. You'd need to run an extension cord from your friendly local power substation, ,to keep it airborne for any length of time.

    So realistically, this whole story is reminiscent of, "the woman who lifted an automobile of of her child". Yeah, it can be done, but not for very long.

    You might be the one having pie with dinner this evening.

    Once upon a time, one of these would go ungodly fast, and pull an ungodly amount of freight. Crank down those pantographs, or forget to pay the electric bill, you got yourself the world's largest paperweight.

    So I know "now all we have to do is design more efficient batteries", "the better mousetrap", or ask the Romulans if they'd be willing to share the singularity technology which powers their warp drives with us..:p



    LOL! Go back and do some research you will be surprised at how far the hobby has moved in the last 6 years.. As for the video.... Again you didn't tell me how it was done if it was fake, lets here how it was done its easy to debunk something without explaining why.. On you tube Im sure there are several other videos out there like it of RC helicopters pulling people and so on. Also, in the video the batteries lasted as long as they could under load. Under a normal flight you might get 6 mins out of them doing tricks or what is called 3d or Smack... flights become shorter in some cases as short as 3mins under load. So, 40 seconds is about right...Under a direct constant heavy load... So you are right about the lady lifting the car analogy. Fact batteries and motors are not that efficient as we would like them to be, but proof that they are powerful in a burst . Video is real sorry... to burst your bubble!

    CaptainCrancky enjoy!

    All in fun :)
    Cheers
     
  18. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 11,684   +1,877

    I'm stuck in the years of alcohol and nitromethane for model planes. But I do think it's cute that your generation thinks it's invented "flying smack". I think it's called, "aerobatics", and the difficulty multiplier is called, "K factor".

    Forty seconds isn't enough to make something more than a viral video anyway. Even if the video is real, It would be a huge leap to pretend the tech, (and legality), exists to turn the Amazon CEO's delusions, into anything more than a pipe dream.

    With that said, if it isn't visible, it is nowhere proven. It could be a block and tackle dangling from a cherry picker, with a couple of fans to blow the models hair around. That's what they do in fashion photography, use fans to blow those gossamer gowns ans silky hair around.

    In any event, I'm sure electric flight tech has advanced considerably (*). I'm also aware they still sell a crap load of internal combustion engines for models Ostensibly, for those who want to move past "toy planes", and on to, "miniature aircraft".

    So, unless I see the helos in the frame, it didn't happen.

    There's still time to call the Romulans though, for those mini-black holes.

    (*) Video FX, have come a long way as well.;)

    So, no matter who's right or wrong, I'll likely have pie for desert tonight anyway. (The Shopright has had Mrs. Smith's on sale for $2.50 since Thanksgiving. Besides, who doesn't like blueberries)?

    Unmanned, and powered by Fossil fuel and hydrazine, how glorious is this:
    [​IMG]

    No batteries needed.
     
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2014
  19. I don't get the question very well: of course there is camera work, it was filmed from several angles. you probably meant if there is "evil post processing" work.

    I don't know much about RC stuff but the video surely looks real, from every angle. it probably would have cost more to fake it (than the amount given, which we cannot take for sure) -- some things are really hard to do, and it's not staged in such a way that makes it easier

    it's odd, but they didn't chose a very small model and not a very thin one either. she also wears those weird boots (that, I think, nobody should be wearing) that are heavy and give her bad stability. so this would be arguments AGAINST the authenticity of the video

    the model is very relaxed and the safety measures that are taken are surprisingly thin -- again arguments against the authenticity

    also -- the pun was SO intended...
     
  20. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 11,684   +1,877

    There's a simpler argument. Let's pose it this way, is the concept practical, or was it done simply for the purpose of sensationalism?

    Let's assume the video is real. Both the motors and batteries were taxed at their limits. It's possible the the equipment was ruined in the process. This is so far away from anything with commercial practicality. Stuff always breaks when it's run @ 110% capacity. The battery power source would have to be kept on the ground, and then fed to the craft by an extension cord to sustain a flight of longer than 40 seconds. Again, impractical, at least for the foreseeable future. So again, sensational, but far from serviceable.

    In other words, while we managed to put men on the moon, a commercial ticket to the moon has never been sold.

    Anyway, this brings up an interesting piece of aviation history.

    In response to our SR-71 spy plane, (mach 3.2 cruise), the Russians built the Mig-29, "Foxbat", also allegedly capable of mach 3 something. Unfortunately, (at least for the Russians), when you tried to fly the Mig at those speeds, it destroyed the engines. Suffice it to say, no SR-71 was ever shot down by one.

    But, the Mig-29 was used as a sensationalized propaganda tool. Arguably, if the internet existed at the time, I expect the Russians would have had a video on YouTube, with it flying at greater than mach 3.

    OK, the the analog is not perfect, but it mostly works.

    Besides, I still think you could use a rented cherry picker and a couple of big fans. Ever heard of "rotoscoping?
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2014
  21. bing bing

    bing bing TS Rookie

    LMAO! Captain! I find it funny you think im a young guy being I mention 3D and Smack... I maybe as old as if not a older then you.. But I wont go on about ones age or wisdom. I will say I think your missing the point here. No one is saying that there is a practical use for the stunt they pulled in this video. Yes! the Amazon guy is crazy but his idea is possible but the question is it practical.. my option I do not think so at this time. As for this video, again I believe it to be real owning a large electric rc heli. Oh as for fans they would have to be two big fans that wont stop the helis from flying .. again we didn't see any other wires on the gal being lifted from all the different angles . To much time and money wasted to make a phoney video.. again to each his own..

    Just except it old man! we are getting old and new tech is starting to come into view.. the SR-71 is old news .. Great Aircraft read a lot of great stories and currently reading a book on the subject.. but its old tech.. SR- 72 is on paper.. excuse me on a computer somewhere being developed...
     
  22. captaincranky

    captaincranky TechSpot Addict Posts: 11,684   +1,877

    No, I'm making a point that wasn't made, because there wasn't much point to the stunt in the first place.

    You do understand they make grid focusing screen for cameras' don't you? And that you can also make multipl;e exposures, right?

    But, let me just say, "you're right, and I'm wrong". which kind of kills the thread, and leaves you, (mercifully), with nothing else to say...:p

    So, you think that something that exists, and the performance of which has never been duplicated is "old business". Perhaps it is but............

    Do you have any idea how many projects have been on paper, crumpled up, and thrown into"the circular file".

    So, until the SR-72 lifts off a runway, takes some pictures of the Russians invading Crimea, brings them back safely, and outperforms the SR-71 while doing it), don't further annoy me with your tales of, "fabulous paper airplanes of the future"......:p <One more for good measure!

    Epilog: Or maybe, somebody will come up with a, "multi-sonic flying desktop. And you say I'm not forward thinking. Besides, isn't an iPhone all you need in the way of a camera these days?

    And BTW, our staff writer originally drew the correlation between the Amazon CEO's plan of drone deliveries, and the helicopter video, not me.
     
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2014
  23. bing bing

    bing bing TS Rookie

    Ok old man you win! lol

    But Ill have to call you from the dead when a SR72 flies a mission that we the public will know about.

    Bing Bing
     
  24. Static Thrust 2 heli = ~ 2x2000W * 15 G/W = 60 kG = 132 lb
    It is real.

    WJU
     

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