3Ms Escape and Rescue System, the Helicat catamaran and the Airlander
3M has expanded its personal safety portfolio to include a new controlled descent device for escape and rescue at height, called the 3M™ and DEUS™ Escape and Rescue System. The innovative new system enables workers to steadily descend from heights up to 590 feet, and is an all-purpose rescue solution. The entire system weighs less than three pounds and is easy to use, which is crucial in a rescue situation where time is of the essence.
HeliCat is a $75,000 catamaran designed to go through rough waters better than a single hull small boat.
World’s Biggest Airship Is No Hindenburg
At 300 feet long, the HAV 304 “Airlander” is the biggest aircraft currently in production — 60 feet longer than a Boeing 747 — and it’s being made by England-based Hybrid Air Vehicles for a cool $100 million, according to Joel Hans, managing editor of Manufacturing.com. The company thinks it could be used in to deliver cargo and heavy equipment to remote areas — think off-shore oil rigs or mining facilities out in the boonies — or for rescue missions on the ocean.
Wired is reporting that the Airlander is no Hindenburg. The hull acts as a hydrofoil and produces 40 percent of the craft’s lift, as an airplane’s wing would, and in conjunction with helium bladders, the craft is capable of a “zero-energy” lift during flight, which increases its range and efficiency. For V8 diesel engines propel it forward, and it’s capable of flying for 21 days straight at a top speed of 100 miles per hour. Not bad for a craft that weighs 38 tons.
One could actually seeing one of these crafts being useful in finding the missing Malaysian Airlines jet, for example. When the wreckage is found, the Airlander could be used to haul cargo to the area and then linger, as would a boat, to supply equipment or goods for those working on the salvage mission.
The company hopes to produce about 10 Airlanders per year for the next four years, and is saying that right now, demand is about 600 to 1,000 Airlanders. That means at least six decades of business if all goes to plan — unless, of course, demand picks up. The company is currently holding a contest for two tickets to fly alongside Dickinson and “a host of celebrities” on the “maiden” flight, which is scheduled for 2016.