Malaysian-born, US-based aeronautical engineer’s paper airplane breaks world record


He said throwing a paper airplane sounds easy, but pushing it at high speed with minimal distortion, consistency and endurance is much more complex.

“Unexpectedly, the challenge is to make it fly straight at different speeds because paper is a flexible material. Often launching would distort and damage the wings, causing the aircraft to roll or turn rapidly.

“Compared to the 2012 record paraglider, my design is smaller, with more compacted layers in the wing, making it stiffer and less prone to distortion. As a result, our winning plane began to glide at a much higher altitude rather than descending in a very aggressive dive to gain more speed.”

Chee said paper airplanes are a kid’s version of engineering and art.

“Since it’s much faster and cheaper to make something from old mail (or an exam paper that I never want to see again!), there’s a lot of trial and error. ‘mistakes,'” said Chee, who, in addition to creating origami airplanes, loves music and playing yo-yos.

“Every throw is an experience to be learned from, and that’s hugely important for any child trying to figure out how the world works. It’s also a great outlet to let the mind wander.

“Whether it’s a flying plane, a bird-like plane, replicas of existing planes, or just a high-performance glider, it’s endless. That’s the best part It’s simple in its concept but complex in its possibilities,” said Chee, the middle of three siblings.

Next, the engineer wants to design, build, and launch a small but efficient rocket into space.

“It will take a few years as I study and write the analysis code and learn how to make rocket propellant,” Chee said.

We have no doubt that he will continue to fly high in his future endeavours.

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