Latest By

Artificial Intelligence
Data Storage
Input Devices
Living Space
Space Tech
Virtual Person

"I have been a soreheaded occupant of a file drawer labeled 'Science Fiction' and I would like out, particularly since so many serious critics regularly mistake the drawer for a urinal."
- Kurt Vonnegut, Jr.

Bat Wings  
  The dream of human-powered winged flight becomes a reality - in low gravity, of course.  

In this excerpt from the novel, the inhabitants of an orbiting habitat take time for recreation.

There were wings attached to hooks at the entrance. McLeve took down a set and began strapping them on. Black bat wings. They made him look like a fallen angel, Milton's style. He handed me another pair. "Like to fly?" he asked...

I was a tiny chick in a vast eggshell. The landscape was wrapped around me: fields and houses... Every direction was down.

From Limits, by Larry Niven.
Published by Del Rey in 1985
Additional resources -

This is from Spirals a short story by Niven and Jerry Pournelle.

Hang gliding is a similar sport; it gained popularity in the late 1960's and early 1970's. Hang gliding is based on a technology developed in 1948 called the "parawing", a V-shaped flexible airfoil made of fabric. NASA showed early interest in using it for returning space craft.

As alert readers have pointed out, Robert Heinlein originated this idea almost thirty years earlier in The Menace From Earth - see the entry for Bat's Wings. For a different take on this idea, see the Dragonfly sky-bike from Rendezvous With Rama (1972) by Arthur C. Clarke.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 2 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from Limits
  More Ideas and Technology by Larry Niven
  Tech news articles related to Limits
  Tech news articles related to works by Larry Niven

Articles related to Transportation
Gyroscopic Median-Straddling Mass Transit Vehicles
AutoX Sets Up Asia's Largest Robotaxi Center
Einride Remote Operator Controls Multiple Vehicles
Hardt Hyperloop Fast Transit In A Can

Want to Contribute an Item? It's easy:
Get the name of the item, a quote, the book's name and the author's name, and Add it here.





Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.





More News

Jet-Powered Flying Suits Tested By Navy
'With his motor in operation, he moves like a diver, head foremost...'

Pub Installs Electrified Fence Around Bar
'I start twelve immensely strong wires--naked, not insulated --from a big dynamo...'

What Does A Tesla Full Self-Driving Car See?
'All objects within my panoramic gaze trembled and vibrated like quick motion pictures...'

BioVYZR Is Ready, Anti-Covid19 PAPR Lovers
'Some clad in the insulated space-suits, with their transparent glassite helmets.'

Tesla Will Have Metal Gear Snake Autocoupler, Musk Confirms
'Its motion was so swift, complex, and perfect that at first I did not see it as a machine, in spite of its metallic glitter.'

Starlink Satellites Leading Edge On-Orbit Debris Mitigation
Propulsion-assisted orbital decay, brought to you by SpaceX.

Healight Ultraviolet Endotracheal Device Has Covid-19 Treatment Potential
'He applied the tip of the instrument to the interior of the wound...'

Parents Use AI To See One Last Message From Their Deceased Son
'...what's to keep me from showing face, Man?'

Satoshi Tomizu Creates Pocket Universes And Worldcraft Bubbles In Glass
'The Worldcraft bubble glittered, catching the light...'

Space Hero Inc. Offers Trip To ISS As Reality Show Prize
'This is Elmer Schmitz, presenting to you the finalists in our Aviation Quiz Program...'

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise | - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.