June 20th 2019 – A talk by Michael Jensen at ÉNA facilities

Thursday, June 20th

The École Nationale Aéronautique (ÉNA) hosted a few dozen aerospace students and professionals on June 20th 2019 for an evening event organized by the Vertical Flight Society including a talk by Michael Jensen as well as a tour of the ÉNA facilities.

Michael, who holds a degree in Physics from the Bishop’s University and a Masters of Engineering from University of Sherbrooke, is currently working on a project to build and fly a “surfable” glider aircraft. He takes inspiration from his background in circus arts and unicycle riding for his aerospace venture. He’s been hooked on flight since building a small glider that actually allowed him to get airborne on his family’s farm with a running takeoff. He is inspired to create a thrilling experience by flying low over, say, a body of water, on an aircraft that is controlled through weight shifting while standing on top of the fuselage.

Yves from ÉNA then guided the group of enthused attendees on a tour of the facility’s impressive fleet of educational aircraft, including a handbuilt and flyable RV6  aircraft, an airworthy H135, and many aircraft and engines for student learning on the ground including a Bell 47, several Bell 206’s, a Hughes 369, a BO-105, a Schweizer 300, a Robinson R44, Eurocopter AS350, and a Pratt&Whitney PT6 twin-pack along with all the tools necessary to assemble and disassemble it. Before finishing the tour, the group stepped outside to take a look at a flight-tested Bombardier CS 100. The impressive resources and facilities at ÉNA are clearly adequate for its staff’s vision to produce Québec and Canada’s next generation of aerospace technicians and engineers.

By Matthew Gruber

Michael Jensen’s weight-shift controlled glider currently in construction at Bâtiment 7 in Point-Saint-Charles