New Paper Airplane Flight Record Achieved

paper plane enthusiastA Japanese man has set a new world record for "maximum time aloft" for a paper airplane.
With a bend of the knees and an arch of the back, a Japanese engineer today set a world flight record for a paper plane, keeping his hand-folded construction in the air for 26.1 seconds.  Using a plane specially designed for "long haul" flights, Takuo Toda narrowly failed to match his lifetime best of 27.9 seconds, a Guinness world record set in Hiroshima earlier, but achieved with a plane that was held together with cellophane tape.

There is a YouTube video of the record-setting throw, although it is not particularly exciting.

Mr.Toda has also announced plans to launch 100 paper planes from the orbiting International Space Station.  The planes would be made with heat-resistant paper capable of withstanding temperatures of 250C and wind speeds of mach 7; he has not solve the problem of how to track the planes during their descent to earth.

Link.  Photograph: Koji Sasahara/AP

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I'm sure NASA could set him up with a catapult launch system and some microdot RFID tags so they could be tracked like a nano swarm.
Oh, and don't tell TSA; I want to see them freak when these things start dropping onto the radar screens. That would be too funny.
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Aim low and you will never disappoint yourself. You may not find quality dates either.

30 seconds is nothing. Takuo needs some 10 year old American kids to compete with.
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There's a problem with launching the 100 paper airplanes from the ISS. Just shoving them out the door won't make them fall. They'll still be in orbit around the Earth for a long, long time until their orbits decay enough to get them to the atmosphere.

If the ISS is going 18,000 MPH around the earth, the only way to drop them down immediately is to launch them backwards at 18,000 MPH to counteract the orbit speed. Then they'll be going 0 MPH and immediately start to drop. But that kind of feat is nearly impossible.

So it seems that if he does launch the planes, he'll just be adding to the currently orbiting trash and causing more danger for satellites and the ISS.
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