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U.Md. Students Seek Human-Powered Helicopter Prize

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credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

credit: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

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LANDOVER, Md. — Engineering students at the University of Maryland are attempting to fly a human-powered helicopter high enough and long enough this weekend to capture an aviation prize.

The team that designed and built the Gamera II XR helicopter is attempting flights Saturday and Sunday at a Prince George’s County sports complex. The helicopter is powered by pedaling.

The team is trying to win the $250,000 Sikorsky Prize from the American Helicopter Society. The prize has remained unclaimed since its creation in 1980.

The prize requires a “perfect flight” of longer than 60 seconds, and the aircraft much reach an altitude of 10 feet.

Last year, the team captured the world record for a flight lasting 65 second that reached 9 feet.

A Canadian team also is vying for the prize.

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(© Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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