‘Jetman’ Flies High Over Rio de Janeiro

May 3, 2012 11:17am

Yves Rossy, the Swiss pilot who entered the history books as the first and only person  in aviation history to fly with a jet-propelled wing , has completed another death-defying stunt, flying high over the skyline of Rio de Janeiro.

Rossy, who calls himself the “Jetman,” leaped from a helicopter on Wednesday with his four-engine wing strapped to his back and circled the Rio skyline for more than 11 minutes.

Starting above the Lagoa Rodrigo de Freitas, Rossy went on to circle the Brazilian city’s famous landmarks such as the “Christ the Redeemer” statue and the nearby areas of Coacabana, Ipanema and Sugar Loaf Mountain before parachuting down onto the Copacabana beach, the BBC reported.

Video captured Rossy moving between roughly 120 and 180 miles per hour throughout the flight.

Rossy began developing the “Jetman” project in 1993.  In 2006, after more than 15 prototypes, he  used a wing he’d created with four model jet engines to fly for five minutes and 40 seconds. He carried only an altimeter and a tiny throttle control.

In May 2008, the 52-year-old made his first official flight over the Swiss Alps in front of the media.

Months later, in September, Rossy crossed the English Channel by air,  an event that was broadcast live to 165 countries. It took him 13 minutes.

Since then, Rossy has flown alongside two Boeing Stearman biplanes carrying the Breitling Wingwalkers, circled a hot-air balloon and hurtled over the Grand Canyon.  Last November, he performed aerobatic figures with two L-39C Albatros planes over the Swiss Alps.

ABC News’ Enjoli Francis contributed to this report.

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