If Tony Stark was Iron Man in the MCU (Marvel Cinematic Universe), then Richard Browning is definitely the Iron Man of the real world.
That’s not an exaggeration.
With his signature jet-powered flying suit, Browning’s invention has impressed people so much that he was even invited over to the HMS Queen Elizabeth to give an aerial demonstration while the ship was at a naval conference in Annapolis.
Watch him fly below!
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Video credit: Rumble
And the former Royal Marines reservist gave his former schoolmates a close-up view of his contraption when he recently went to a school reunion at Queen’s College in Taunton, Somerset.
One thing’s for sure, his former classmates didn’t need to ask what he had been up to since graduating!
The 41-year-old had spent several months developing the suit “for no reason initially other than just the sheer joy of the challenge,” he says. After successfully building the suit, he founded a startup called Gravity Industries.
While people have experimented with various jet packs and flying suits for decades, what sets Browning’s design apart is that the primary control mechanism is the human body itself. “The traditional kind of jet pack tends to be much more of a big kind of flight object that you’re strapping yourself into, whereas this is trying to be the most minimalist you can get away with in order to fly,” he says.
Browning’s “Iron Man” suit is powered by five small jet engines, one on the back and two on each arm, and collectively, they provide both lift and a means for intuitive piloting.“There is some modest throttle control, but most of it is down to vectoring,” he says.
“If you want to land, just flare your arms out…you drop because the vertical component of thrust has been diminished.And then to move forward all you’re doing is just deflecting the two forward front vectors, your arms, pointing them backward.
It’s a bit like the rotor disk of a helicopter.”
The suit has a flight time of 5 minutes while Browning recently achieved 85 mph and broke his own world speed record.
While he has been in talks with the Royal Navy on the potential military applications of the technology, his bigger wish is to give birth to jet suit racing events. And for a mere $440,000, you can get your own suit and participate!