MetaFly, the drone that flies like a butterfly
Marseille, France-based startup Xtim’s new creation, the MetaFly is directly inspired by nature and bird flight. Unlike conventional drones, it does not function with rotors, nor is it designed for taking pictures but to “experience flight.” This project can be exclusively found (and supported) on the crowdfunding platform Kickstarter.
The specific source of inspiration for this radio-operated flying insect was the flapping of butterfly wings. Capable of being maneuvered for up to 100 meters, the MetaFly weighs less than 10 grams, with a wingspan of 29 centimeters and can rapidly reach 20 kilometers per hour. The design is essentially crash-resistant thanks to its carbon fiber wings and elastic legs which help it to land upright. According to its inventors, the MetaFly has an autonomy of just eight minutes but a battery that is capable of recharging in less than 15 minutes.
The first models are available on Kickstarter until May 2, 2019 starting at 69 euros (about P4,000) for the first deliveries, expected in September 2019. Afterwards, the drones will likely be priced from 129 euros (about P7,600). The project has already reached over 10 times its funding goal of 30,000 euros (about P1.7 million).
MetaFly is led by Edwin Van Ruymbeke, who, in 2014, successfully crowdfunded a similar venture, the spectacular Bionic Bird. CE/JB