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Remember the crazy Emirates commercial where men flew alongside a plane in jetpacks? Here's how they made it

Download: Printable PDF Date: 07 Nov 2015 05:31 category:
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Remember the crazy Emirates commercial where men flew alongside a plane in jetpacks? Here's how they made it - Events / Festivals publisher
Tatjana Obrazcova
Country: United Arab Emirates Aircraft: Airplanes

Last week, Emirates Airlines astounded the world when it aired a commercial featuring two men in jetpacks flying alongside their A380 jumbo jet, 4,000 feet above Dubai.

A stunt like this had never been done before, which is why Emirates released exclusive behind-the-scenes footage featuring the extensive planning and preparation that went into the making of this commercial.

Not surprisingly, the idea was initially met with skepticism.

"We're looking at a human being that has a Kevlar wing strapped to their body, with four engines, flying in close proximity to an aircraft that is absolutely enormous," said Michael Rudolph, head of aviation regulations and safety for the Dubai Civil Aviation Authority.

Gareth Lloyd Evans, flight operations manager, agreed that the idea was initially "madness," but continued that "as we worked through the process, identified the risks and all the mitigations, it became more of a challenge and opportunity to show our skills."

Yves Rossy and Vince Reffetare, the jetpack pilots, had to use a lot of power to keep up with Emirates' A380, which meant that they could fly for no more than 10 minutes at a time. Due to this limited window, strict air space parameters were enforced, and every sequence was choreographed to perfection in order to ensure that producers would get the right shots for the commercial.

Of course, safety was everyone's main priority. Rossy and Reffetare kept in close contact with the Emirates pilot throughout the stunt via radio communication.

"For this to be a first we had to make sure we ticked all the boxes as [far as] safety is concerned, and we did," said Rudolph.



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