Several U.S. firms have expressed an interest in a design for an ultra-lightweight aluminium aircraft developed by a police man and amateur flying enthusiast in the northern Greek city of Florina, who has successfully built two fully functioning planes.
George Iliopoulos was unable to afford his own plane on a policeman’s salary but got the idea of building one using the materials at hand during a visit to specialist stores in Canada.
His first prototype was built almost entirely of recycled wood, using old furniture, a wheelchair and a car engine. This first plane was name the ‘Lygkistis’ and for a while he thought he would not repeat the attempt in his lifetime.
It was not long, however, before he was back to the drawing board designing his second aircraft, initially using printing press plates, on a scale of 1:6. When this design actually flew, Iliopoulos reported that he nearly had a heart attack.
There followed a process of painstaking work and 3,000 modifications of the original design to build the craft on a normal scale out of aircraft-grade aluminium before ‘Archon’, Iliopoulos’ second plane, took to the skies.
‘Archon’ is an ultra-light aircraft that looks similar to a fighter plane and, according to Iliopoulos, he has received a number of e-mails from U.S. firms interested in exploiting the design commercially.
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