With a jet-powered wing attached to his body, Yves Rossy expands the possibilities of human flight.

Why you should listen

On May 7 of this year, Swiss pilot Yves Rossy stepped out of a helicopter 8,000 feet above the Grand Canyon and ... took off. Wearing a rigid wing powered by four model jet turbine engines, Rossy flew for eight minutes over the mile-deep trench, soaring over the red rocks before parachuting down to the Colorado River far below. It's the latest exploit in a life powered by one dream: to fly like a bird.

Wearing his single wing, Rossy really flies, steering with the movements of his body. In the last couple of years he has crossed the English Channel, flown over the Swiss Alps and performed aerobatic loops around a hot-air balloon; for his next quest, he is developing a new kind of parachute that will enable him to fly as low as 200 meters.

 

What others say

“It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s Yves Rossy!” — Accelerating Future

Yves Rossy’s TED talk

Yves Rossy on the TED Blog

Quotes from Yves Rossy

I don’t have feathers, but I feel like a bird sometimes.
Yves Rossy
TEDGlobal 2011 • 5.1M views Nov 2011
Jaw-dropping, Courageous
I have the approach of a professional pilot with the respect of a pioneer in front of Mother Nature.
Yves Rossy
TEDGlobal 2011 • 5.1M views Nov 2011
Jaw-dropping, Courageous