Aviator PPG was first put on Flite Test’s radar at Oshkosh 2016 and the guys were thrilled when PPG made it possible for them not only to be able to fly the new FT Mini Pietenpol at the municipal airport in Lake Wales, Fla., but also have the opportunity to watch powered paragliding in action.
Powered paragliding/paramotoring basics
According to the Aviator PPG website: Powered Paragliding is a “form of powered flight, open to the air in all directions, no fuselage, no windows, just you in complete control…[it] can be launched from a small field, is simple to fly and to transport, requires no licensing or medical. Unlike a traditional aircraft, a paramotor is inherently stable while offering an even greater degree of precision and control.”
Typically, a beginner glider flies 25-30 mph, while expert gliders fly faster—sometimes more than 50 mph! While U.S. regulations allow a paramotor pilot to fly up to 18,000 ft., the average height a pilot climbs to is 300-500 ft. The cost to get started ranges. High quality, entry-level equipment is approximately $9,500 and the highest end equipment, which includes a carbon fiber trike, top end glider and motor, would be closer to $22,000.
There are several types of flying you can do with a paramotor including: sightseeing, ridge soaring, slalom competitions, extreme acrobatics and more. It is wise to attend a paramotor school in order to have safe and successful flights.
For more about the sport, Aviator PPG has an extensive FAQ section, which is incredibly helpful if you want to get started in paramotoring.
What was so fantastic about this experience for our Flite Test team is that Eric, Travis and Jon each have extensive backgrounds in aviation, which enables them to expertly teach the paramotor sport to others. Their passion for powered paragliding is contagious—so much so that Josh is convinced he wants to buy one himself!
Stay tuned for more on powered paragliding and learn more about Aviator PPG here.