Download video: Ancient Flying Vimana Recreated - Shivkar Bapuji Talpade
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In 1895, eight years before the Wright Brothers flew their first plane, a man called Shivkar Bapuji Talpade flew an unmanned airplane in front of thousands of people in India. But the really intriguing detail is that he did not depend on modern physics or aviation techniques, but he created this flying machine entirely based on ancient Indian texts.
Shivkar was born in 1864 in Mumbai and was regarded as a prodigy. He earned a Ph. D before the age of 30. When he was 15, he had a meeting with an elderly man called Subbaraya Shastry who had been researching Vimanas all his life. He is the same man who later wrote Vymanika Shastra, a book about flying machines. They both worked together for 15 years and built a Vimana that could not only fly, but could also be controlled with some kind of a remote control device.
So, did the Vimana fly? The very first flight was tested in Mumbai beach in front of thousands of people and this unmanned Vimana reached an altitude of 1500 feet and sustained its flight for about 37 seconds before it crashed. Now, compare this with the first flight of Wright Brothers in the U.S, their first flight only reached an altitude of 120 feet and lasted 12 seconds before it crashed. While the Wright Brothers were funded with 25,000 dollars after their first flight, Shivkar and Shastry were denounced as con artists who created worthless machines. Remember, this is the time of British occupation of India and racism was widespread.
After the Vimana crashed, Shivkar attempted to enhance the features and build a new design which would be fueled by Mercury ions. He tried desperately to get funds but was turned down by virtually everyone but still built a mercury engine in his own house. Due to lack of protective gear, he became subject to mercury vapor poisoning which created hallucinations and other mental disorders.
When the word spread, the British accused him of making explosives and confiscated his new Vimana. The prosecutor and the judge simply laughed at him when he tried to explain a Mercury Ion engine and claimed that such a machine would never work. A team of expert scientists were brought in and they all unanimously agreed that a mercury powered device is impossible.
Today, NASA uses mercury ion engines for space travel and has publicly announced that ion engines can provide constant acceleration, reducing travel times with increased efficiency while decreasing the size of the spacecraft.
Shivkar was thrown in Jail and was released after a few years with a condition not to make any more machines. However, he secretly created another Vimana called Rukma Vimana. It is rumored that this bell shaped Vimana was secretly taken to Germany in 1930s and was recreated as the famous “Nazi Bell”. You can see the similarity between the Rukma Vimana and the Nazi Bell. Strangely, bell shaped UFOs have been sighted multiple times around the world and one such UFO even crashed in Kecksburg, Pennsylvania.
Most people think that Da Vinci was the first to write about flying machines around 500 years ago, but Indian texts and carvings show startling evidences of flying devices dating at least 2000 years ago. Here is a Vimana similar to a modern day jetpack carved 1200 years ago. It shows safety features like belts, propeller like wheels and gear like devices. Here is a model of a rocket carved in India around 7th century A.D. These are just a few examples, but there are thousands of references to these flying machines in ancient Indian text.
So what happened to Shivkar? He received no recognition, no money and no credit for creating the very first aircraft. He died a heartbroken man at the age of 53.
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