By Kaitlin MillerPosted 01.27.2012 at 10:30 am 22 Comments
Last year, the Austrian engineering firm IAT21 set out to construct a flying machine that floated like a hummingbird, traveled as fast as a jet, was as quiet as a hot-air balloon, and was simple enough that a car mechanic could repair it. The company's working prototype, called D-Dalus, is roughly five feet by three feet square and can lift about 100 pounds. But the size and lift are not what's most impressive.
Ever since Schuyler Skaats Wheeler introduced the first axial-bladed electric desk fan in 1882, fan technology has remained remarkably conservative. But that classic bladed design wasn't good enough for the innovative people at Dyson. With their new desk fan, Dyson has thrown out over a hundred years of axial desk fan technology to create the first fan that provides a continuous stream of smooth air.