| 6:07 PM EST

It’s A Bird! It’s A Plane! It’s A Martin Jetpack!

A New Zealand aircraft company says its new one-person jetpack can reach an altitude of 7,000 feet and zip along at speeds as high as 50 mph for half an hour at a time.
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A New Zealand aircraft company says its new one-person jetpack can reach an altitude of 7,000 feet and zip along at speeds as high as 50 mph for half an hour at a time.

The Martin Jetpack at rest

Martin Aircraft Co. Ltd. plans to begin selling the $150,000 Martin Jetpack, which it describes to The Wall Street Journal as a "motorcycle for the sky," in mid-2014. The latest prototype has a parachute and computer-controlled stabilization system that includes an automatic hover function.

The apparatus is about 7 ft tall, 7 ft wide and 6 ft deep. The unit is lifted by a V-4, two-stroke 200-hp gasoline engine that drives twin-ducted fans. The system can lift a 220-lb payload, according to the company.

Operators are expected to don a helmet, boots, neck restraint and fireproof suit. But they may not need a pilot's license, at least in the U.S., if the jetpack is classified by the Federal Aviation Authority as an ultralight aircraft.