Software consultant Barry Holleran spends his spare time reaching new heights paramotoring – a sport combining a parachute above for lift and a fan behind for drive and something like a deckchair in the middle for support.
“There’s no feeling like it,” Barry says. “It’s complete freedom in three dimensions. When the eagles are flying alongside you – particularly with the motor off - it’s incredible.”
Barry, who has been helping to drive the development of ATDI’s portable planning tool PnC, started flying in sail planes then moved to paragliding but finally settled on a flying machine he can fit in the boot of his car.
“It’s a deckchair in the sky suspended on bits of nylon and it couldn’t be more relaxing.”
ATDI operations director Peter Paul flies a light aircraft and he feels the concentration involved clears his mind and refreshes him for when he’s back on earth solving engineering problems.
Barry has a slightly different perspective: “What I do is totally relaxing so that helps, of course, but it also helps me set my goals. If I manage a flight of 200 miles, it makes me aim for 210 miles – or to go higher or longer.”
The sky’s the limit.