Flying to Austria on a paper plane

Aerospace engineering student Simant Suman had never thought in his wildest dreams that a paper plane could win him a trip to Austria. Simant from Chennai is among the three finalists who have won the National Qualifiers of a paper plane designing and flying contest ‘Red Bull Paper Wings 2012’.

Lauv Jaiswal who won in the aerobatics category at ‘Paper Wings 2012’.

Held at New Delhi Railway Station of Airport Express Metro Line recently, 63 participants from seven cities contested in the event under three categories - longest distance, longest airtime and aerobatics.

Simant from Sri Ramaswamy Memorial (SRM) University won the top position under the longest distance category by flying his paper plane a distance of 30.9 meters.

“I am an aerospace engineering student, so for me it was not very difficult. I knew that flying at 45 degrees is the best for the category in which I participated. My family and I never thought that I will get a chance to go Austria by making and flying paper planes,” Simant said.

“My college has a big lab which has optimum conditions for practicing paper plane flying. That is where I prepared for the event,” he added. Simant’s paper plane flew the longest distance between the lift-off and the landing point within the official air space created on the spot.

Clocking a time of 7.10 seconds in the air, the paper plane by Anuj Jain from Symbiosis Institute of Technology in Pune won in the longest airtime category.

The aerobatics category was won by Lauv Jaiswal from Techno India College, Kolkata. The competition under aerobatics category was judged by Bollywood actor Kunal Kapoor along with other two judges, a commercial pilot  Captain Asif Ansari and NCC cadet Neelanshu Rangi.

Apart from being an actor, Kunal has a passion for flying and he is training to be a pilot.  Contestants in this category were judged on the creativity and style of the plane- that is what it takes to make a paper plane fly artistically through the air.

“It is absolutely fantastic to see how much these guys can manage to do with a piece of paper. I remember the paper planes we made in college were simple enough. But these people have made really complicated and aerodynamic paper planes. They have exhibited the art of making and flying paper planes on a competitive platform, displaying their passion for aerodynamics and flying,” Kunal said.

Lauv Jaiswal, a third year engineering student, took  help from videos on the
internet. “I practised for around one month for the National Qualifiers. It looks simple but some Physics is required to make a good paper plane that stays in air and fly through it for a certain duration,” he told Metrolife after the event.

The three finalists will challenge winners from 85 other countries in the World Qualifiers to be held in Austria in upcoming May, where Kunal Kapoor has also been invited.

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