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This Incredible Plane: The Gossamer Albatross

The most successful human-powered aircraft pushed both plane and pilot to the very edge.

The Gossamer Albatross in flight.
The Gossamer Albatross in flight.
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If the idea of an airplane you could hop into, or onto, and pedal to the sky appeals to you, I get it. But don’t hold your breath for one to show up at your local sporting goods store any time soon. The physics of creating a human-powered plane are impossible.

Well, almost impossible. The Gossamer Albatross was built in the late 1970s for a pair of world-record competitions and took home the gold in both. In the process, it established world records that stand today. 

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