Powered Parachute PPCDo you dream of soaring like a bird high above the earth, carefree and euphoric? You do not need to fly expensive aircraft. Try a powered parachute for the ultimate experience in flying. 

In 1964, the precursor of the present day powered parachute (PPC), was patented. It was called a “Multi-Cell Wing” or “Parafoil”. In 2004, the present day version was made by Don Shaw who mounted an engine from a two-wheel motor scooter with a propeller and a parafoil. Powered parachutes are also called motorized parachutes or PPC. This is a parachute with a difference. It has a motor and comes equipped with wheels. It can fly at speeds of 25-35 miles per hour. These parachutes can operate at heights close to the ground or as high as 18,000 feet or more.

The powered parachute (PPC) generally has fuel tank of 5 -10 gallons capacity and can be airborne for about 3 hours. They have short take offs and landings.  

Did you know that the powered parachute is the least expensive among light sports aircrafts? It costs around $5000. A two-seater may cost you around $10,000 while a top end model may cost anything between $15,000- $ 20,000.  

Do you want to fly but don’t have the time to obtain a pilot license? Then try flying a powered parachute. As per part 103 of the US Federal Aviation Regulations, single parachutes can be flown without license or for that matter without receiving flight instruction. However, it would be best to undergo minimum training. All a person needs is to learn flying instructions. This can be learnt in 5 to 10 hours.  

A PPC with two seats is classified as light sport aircraft (LSA). For flying an LSA, one needs to have a sport pilot certificate. This is issued by the FAA. The flight training takes 12 hours.  

With powered parachute (PPC), one can enjoy sightseeing. Photography from the powered parachute (PPC) is awesome. A powered parachute (PPC) can be used in agriculture for spraying operations. Law enforcement agencies also find a powered parachute (PPC) useful for surveillance.  

You don’t require an airport for take off and landing operations. A powered parachute (PPC) can be flown from back yards, hay fields that have been recently mowed and small airports. Generally, night flying was not allowed for a powered parachute (PPC). However, in 2004, FAA amended the rules. A powered parachute (PPC) that is correctly equipped can fly legally. 

Normal aircraft with fixed wings are not considered as safe as a powered parachute (PPC). A powered parachute (PPC) has inherent safety on account of stall resistance, limited response and because of the inherent stability. However, the main hazards for a powered parachute (PPC) is wind and other obstacles. It is best not to fly the powered parachute (PPC) when there are winds that exceed 10-15 mph. 

The fun from flying a powered parachute (PPC) is incomparable. So get into your powered parachute (PPC), strap on your helmet, check the radio batteries and take off for the ultimate flying experience.




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