Flying Nowhere|一起去飞吧!

Flying Nowhere

by Daniel Howard

Vertical wind tunnels give all the thrill of skydiving without taking a plane.

  Technology always finds unexpected uses. A vertical wind tunnel is made up of a vertical space blowing high-powered air straight up. It was originally designed to do aerodynamic research, but it was not long before people realized that they could also be fun. Now, vertical wind tunnels are popping up in increasing numbers advertised as indoor skydiving or bodyflight. What began as yet another dull research tool has become an exciting activity.


  Recreational vertical wind tunnels blow air upwards through a safety net at around 195 kilometers per hour, a sufficient speed to actually lift a person off his or her feet. In the right position, the result is that the person in the wind tunnel floats in the air. The enclosed space simulates the flight-like feeling of skydiving while floating only a meter or two off the ground. For anyone scared of heights but wanting the sensation of flying, the vertical wind tunnel can be a perfect activity.


  The first person to fly in a vertical wind tunnel was Jack Tiffany in 1964 at the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, located in Ohio. The first public reference was in a Canadian skydiving magazine in 1979. Shortly after, Jean St. Germain patented the technology for recreational use, once in 1984 and again in 1994. Many skydiving facilities use vertical wind tunnels for training skydivers. Additionally, several companies have facilities around the world where people can experience the vertical wind tunnel just for fun. For novices, there are lessons and coaches on hand to keep everyone safe. For experienced users, there are competitions in which teams compete in choreographed maneuvers. It is all about the joy of flight, without ever leaving the ground.

 

一起去飞吧!

垂直风洞让你不用搭乘飞机就能体验到高空跳伞的全然快感。

  科技总是能发现到意想不到的用途。垂直风洞是由强力空气向上直吹的一个垂直空间所构成的。它最初是设计用来做空气动力学的研究,不过没有多久,大家便意识到它们也能够很好玩。现在,垂直风洞的数量如雨后春笋般与日俱增,标榜为室内跳伞或人体飞行。从开始这原本是另一项沉闷的研究工具,到后来竟变成了一项令人大呼过瘾的活动。


  娱乐型的垂直风洞透过一个安全网,以每小时大约一百九十五公里的速度将空气向上吹动,这个速度足以让一个人真正离开地面。位置正确时,风洞里的玩家最后就会在空中漂浮。这种密闭的空间模拟出高空跳伞那种飞行般的感觉,虽然仅是在离地面一、两公尺的高度漂浮罢了。对于有惧高症但又想体验飞翔快感的人来说,垂直风洞会是一项极佳的活动。


  1964 年,杰克‧帝福尼是首位在垂直风洞飞行的人,地点位于美国俄亥俄州的莱特――派特森空军基地。1979 年,加拿大某高空跳伞杂志首度公开提及垂直风洞飞行一事。不久,金‧杰尔曼获得了此项作为娱乐用途的技术专利,1984 年取得一次,1994 年又再度取得。许多高空跳伞训练中心都会利用垂直风洞来为高空跳伞员进行训练。此外,全世界有不少公司拥有该项设施,大家在那里可以体验垂直风洞所带来的乐趣。对新手而言,现场会有训练课程,以及教练随时在旁以确保每个人的安全。对于经验丰富的使用者来说,还有就编排舞蹈的动作进行团队竞赛。这完全就是不用搭飞机远离地面就可享受到的飞行乐趣。





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Flying Nowhere|一起去飞吧!