Morning Buzz

Recreational Jetpacks in New Zealand's Future

Over the years New Zealand has picked up some serious bragging rights. The down under destination served as the backdrop for the highly popular Lord of the Rings trilogy and is the home of musical comedy duo Flight of the Conchords. Now on a roll, the island country is putting the rest of us to shame, by permitting something exponentially cooler than medical marijuana -- mother flippin' jetpacks.

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On Tuesday, New Zealand's Martin Aircraft Company Limited announced a breakthrough in commercial jetpacks after aviation regulators gave the green light for manned flight tests.

Created by founding director Glenn Martin, the Martin Jetpack has been more than 30 years in the making and features two engine-driven fan ducts with enough propulsion strength to lift roughly 727 pounds. Originally intended for recreational use, the makers of the Martin Jetpack also see the added potential for use in the military and emergency response.

According to a report by Discovery News, now that New Zealand regulators have issued permits to test the yet-to-be-released jetpacks, Martin Aircraft feels confident in its ability to take the device to the commercial market in the near future (their website lists a target date of 2014). Should that happen, the legalized jetpacks will run an estimated $100,000.

Psh. Totally worth it.

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Katie Johnson
Contact: Katie Johnson