Despite the Hindenburg disaster and Roger Ebert's theory that any movie feature a blimp is going to suck (he's been right so far), I have a soft spot in my heart for blimps.
I think part of this comes from the nostalgic feeling that blimps give me. They conjure images of a more innocent age. Maybe this is just because they're so puffy and look non-threatening... when they're not exploding, that is.
For a while there was rumor going around that Russia was designing a program using zeppelins to deliver mail to remote areas of Siberia. From what I can gather, this was a fabrication that spread across the Internet-along with artwork portraying the designs for landing bays and such that would be used. This ended out being promotional material for a Russian ad agency.
Then there was the Walrus program, a crazy idea involving the development of an aircraft carrier-sized blimp for use by American armed forces. This ended out being real-but the idea was scrapped due to budgetary cuts.
And there's the giant all-seeing blimp that can track an entire city (or battlefield) at once. THAT is, as far as I can tell, still in development.
How did I come by this information? Well, in looking for topic ideas, blimps popped into my noggin. And after all of that info-which is really neat but doesn't fall into my subject parameters-I settled on this:
The Turbo RC Blimp from Draganfly Innovations
This little zeppelin rates in at a whopping 52 inches in size. It is light-weight and safe to fly indoors via a three channel remote control unit:
Looks easy enough...
It is powered by a 3-volt battery and the zeppelin envelope needs to be filled with helium or else it'll just flop around on the floor and scare your pets.
There are other brands of RC blimps-but none this small (at least that I've come across).
Ants can soar in style...
Pretty cool-though I'm curious as to how easy it would be to navigate. Having recently lost a giant balloon (the string came detached, leaving a five-foot wide heart shaped UFO to fly across the state of Florida, possibly landing somewhere in Georgia), I'm a little scared of trying this thing out.
At least it can't do this-though if it got caught in a ceiling fan, the results might be similar:
Regardless of the horrifying footage above, it's nice to see that the fascination with the blimp hasn't waned over the decades. And even if the Siberian mail courier zeppelin idea wasn't real, it sure would be cool.
You can find your tiny blimp at Amazon.
SOURCES: Defense Tech, English Russia