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Inventor is building his own flying saucer

Posted on Tuesday, 27 May, 2014 | Comment icon 37 comments

Could Phillips' invention be the real deal ? Image Credit: CC BY 2.0 Gerhard Uhlhorn

Retired engineer Duan Phillips has spent the last 15 years constructing a saucer-shaped flying vehicle.

The 86-year-old has been building his 5.5m "lift activator disc" inside a hangar at the Rutherford Aerodrome in Maitland, Australia and believes that once completed it will have the potential to revolutionize air travel all across the world.

The machine works using horizontal blades that spin in the central chamber and push air downwards over the disc. A jet or propeller at the rear end of the craft will provide thrust while the air flow spins the outer section of the wings to provide gyroscopic stability.

Phillips maintains that his disc will prove both faster and safer than a helicopter while being easier to land than a conventional plane. "Most people say it's a good idea when they hear about it," he says. "Other people just look at you funny."

While there is still a bit of work to be done before the vehicle can take to this skies, Phillips is hopeful that his flying saucer will be ready for testing later on this year.

Source: Daily Telegraph | Comments (37)

Tags: UFO, Duan Phillips

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #28 Posted by seeder on 28 May, 2014, 17:52
Yes one of the key issues was take-off speed. As the pilots legs popped down thru a hatch and he had to run very fast, well, the pilot just couldn't run that fast, so it never flew. See the pilots legs?
Comment icon #29 Posted by sinewave on 28 May, 2014, 17:53
Designs of this type seem to work best in scifi stories.
Comment icon #30 Posted by sinewave on 28 May, 2014, 17:55
The Flintstonemobile of aircraft.
Comment icon #31 Posted by PersonFromPorlock on 28 May, 2014, 21:28
OK, I'm guessing at the principle here but it does look like what was used in that photo I posted: air is blown out from the center of a dome-shaped surface, and since it's moving it has lower pressure than the atmosphere above it. The atmosphere presses down on it, keeping the moving air in contact with the dome until it escapes around the edge of the dome. Since the air pressure on the top of the dome is less than on the underside, lift is generated. There are lots of other saucer-shaped machines, but most of them that I'm aware of move air straight down and rely on jet thrust ... [More]
Comment icon #32 Posted by sinewave on 28 May, 2014, 21:41
It's your basic disc-shaped Coanda Effect vehicle. Yeah, fly-by-wire tech would certainly make it easier to fly but there is little practical benefit from realized from using that shape.
Comment icon #33 Posted by The Sky Scanner on 28 May, 2014, 22:10
Fair play to him, when you reach the dizzy heights of 86yrs on this earth you have earnt the right to wander around your shed building whatever bonkers idea you like......If i'm lucky enough to get to his age i'm going to do the same thing, I might even throw in a few little white lies about by saying it's using some made up technology too - just to annoy people really, that'll be as enjoyable as pottering around the shed with my spanners..
Comment icon #34 Posted by Slave2Fate on 29 May, 2014, 0:41
I don't know why but the thought of you doing that gave me a good laugh, and I needed that.
Comment icon #35 Posted by psyche101 on 29 May, 2014, 0:58
LOL, that's confidence plus isn't it!! I wonder where he was standing when it crashed into the hanger!!
Comment icon #36 Posted by Rose-Red Howler on 29 May, 2014, 1:39
To be fair on him, this is really cool. I really hope that something good comes of this and it will be allowed to fly. There's more pictures here:
Comment icon #37 Posted by keithisco on 29 May, 2014, 7:41
Ground - effect (or more specifically Wing in Ground Effect) aircraft rely on forward propulsion to create the ground - effect whilst descending to the most efficient height over land (water) to create sufficient lift from the forward compression wave to allow the major portion of the thrust available to be channelled into forward momentum rather than lift. Hovercraft are a surface effect vehicle needing to constrain the high pressure within a skirt to maintain lift (not aerodynamic lift) and so are not capable of true "flight" and very limited to height above ground because the h... [More]

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