SKYDIVE INTO NET WITHOUT A PARACHUTE
When ‘Red Bull Air Force’ skydiver Luke Aikins devised his plan to free fall 25,000 feet without a parachute into a net, his Stride Gum sponsored team called upon Laser Guidance to design a visual reference system to direct his descent to the target.
David Shemwell designed a system utilizing two sets of four LED PAPI lights pointing straight up. An ‘outer quad’ gave general visual cues. A second ‘inner quad’ under the four sides of the net gave crucial last-second positive visual reference. Four white lights indicated a proper glide path. If Luke strayed off target during descent, he would see a red light from the PAPI, indicating a needed course correction to re-align to centerline.