‘Blimp on steroids’ designed to fly through remote skies

A Calgary company is spearheading development of a new aircraft, filled with helium and powered by four rotors, which will be used to move materials in remote areas including the Canadian North.

SkyHook International announced Tuesday that it will build the Jess Heavy Lifter (JHL-40) in conjunction with aircraft manufacturer Boeing Co.

SkyHook and Boeing hope to be flying the first prototypes of the JHL-40 by 2012. (SkyHook International)
The JHL-40 takes elements of a blimp and a helicopter to lift up to 40 tonnes in one load and travel up to 320 kilometres without refuelling. It will have a top speed of 70 knots.

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