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Image credit: GoFly Prize / Texas A&M University

Boeing gave $20,000 to these ten wacky personal flyer designs

They were the winners of the first phase of its GoFly Prize.
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GoFly Prize / Texas A&M University

Last year, Boeing announced the GoFly Prize, a new competition that will award one winner $1 million for a successful personal flying device prototype. It has to take off and land vertically, carry a human 20 miles without the need for refueling or recharging and be quiet, safe and compact, but otherwise, the design is completely up to those building it. Phase I of the competition just wrapped up and GoFly has announced the top 10 designs, each of which will be awarded $20,000.

GoFly says over 600 innovators from more than 30 countries submitted designs for Phase I and 97 experts selected the top 10. The winning teams come from Latvia, the US, the UK, the Netherlands and Japan and their submissions include an incredibly wide range of designs. Aeroxo LV from Latvia describes its device as a "tilt rotor aerial vehicle type that combines VTOL capabilities of helicopter with range and speed of fixed-wing aircraft." Georgia Tech's HummingBuzz design "utilizes the fully electric, ducted coaxial rotor configuration, with the fuselage on top, in the shape of a motorcycle." And team Mamba from the US touts its hexcopter's safety while Tetra from Japan notes its design's stylishness.

With Phase I completed, Phase II is now underway and anyone, not just the 10 teams selected for Phase I prizes can enter. The registration deadline is December 8th and by February 6th, teams will have to provide a status report about their prototype's flying capabilities. The top four teams will then receive $50,000 each. In October 2019, GoFly will hold the final fly-off and hand out a number of prizes. The "disruptive advancement" prize comes with $100,000, the smallest and quietest entries will each get $250,000 and the Grand Prize winner will be awarded $1 million.

You can check out all of the top 10 Phase I designs here.

Images: GoFly Prize

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