Para-Flite Successfully Flies World’s Largest Parachute
YUMA, Arizona - 4 December, 2006
Para-Flite Inc, a world leader in parachute technology, has successfully completed a test drop with a new self-guided cargo delivery system consisting of the largest ram air parachute ever flown. The system, called the MegaFly®, can carry over 26,000 lbs of cargo and is intended to delivery supplies to military units. After being dropped at altitudes as high as 25,000 feet, the MegaFly® will be able to fly itself to a designated point on the ground up to 22 kilometers away. The MegaFly® will be used to increase the safety and accuracy of missions involving aerial delivery of large payloads.
The MegaFly® has a 9,000 square foot ram air canopy, also known as a gliding parachute. The span of the canopy from wingtip to wingtip is over 170 feet, approximately 20 feet less than the wingspan of a Boeing 747. The MegaFly® features a new guidance unit developed by Wamore Inc, a long time partner with Para-Flite. The test was conducted as part of a US Army Natick Soldier Research Development & Engineering Center development program.
JC Berland, President of Para-Flite and chief designer of the parachute, was elated with the results of the test drop. "Five years ago we were significantly challenged when dropping 2,000 lbs using a ram air canopy. Since then, Para-Flite has learned a great deal about the engineering, manufacturing, and rigging requirements involved with dropping heavy cargo with ram air technology. Today we demonstrated how far we have come and how well we understand these incredibly complex systems. To think of the progress we have made in the last few years is truly breathtaking."
The MegaFly® adds to Para-Flite's current range of precision delivery equipment which is capable of dropping from 100lbs to 10,000lbs. Para-Flite's innovative development team has also recently introduced the Intruder, a revolutionary military personnel parachute system and the Hi Glide parachute which has the world's highest glide ratio. Para-Flite is also the developer of the ATPS (Advanced Tactical Parachute System) which will replace the US Army's 52,000 troop parachutes.