Igor I. Sikorsky Human Powered Helicopter Competition
The Igor I. Sikorsky Human Powered Helicopter Competition was established in 1980 by the American Helicopter Society (AHS) International to develop the first controlled flight of a human powered helicopter that meets a set of extremely challenging requirements. In summary, the requirements to win the AHS Human Powered Helicopter Competition include a flight duration of 60 seconds and reaching an altitude of 3 meters (9.8 ft) while remaining in a 10 meter (32.8 ft) square. The flight must be certified by a representative of the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale.
The AHS competition was named in honor of Igor Sikorsky and the current prize purse of $250,000 is pledged by Sikorsky Aircraft Corporation. The prize has not yet been won as of April 2013[update]. The competition is international and is open to individuals or teams from any part of the world.
Many have attempted to fly human powered helicopters both before and after the creation of the Sikorsky Prize. None have met all of the prize's requirements. Very few human powered aircraft in the history of aviation have succeeded in leaving the ground under official witnessing. The first helicopter to do so was the Da Vinci III in 1989, designed and built by students at Cal Poly San Luis Obispo in California, USA. It flew for 7.1 seconds and reached a height of 8 inches (20 cm). The second was the Yuri I in 1994, designed and built by students at Nihon University in Japan. It flew for 19.46 seconds and reached an altitude of 20 cm. Students at the University of Maryland designed and built the Gamera I in an attempt to win the prize. After a failed test flight on May 11, 2011, the Gamera I successfully flew on May 12, 2011 for approximately four seconds, not long or high enough to win the prize. In November 2011 construction began on the improved Gamera II. On June 21, 2012, the Gamera II flew for a duration of 50 seconds.  On June 24, 2012, the NTS Works Upturn human powered helicopter also successfully flew for 10 seconds, climbing to about 2 ft (0.6 m). 
Additional tests of Gamera II with a larger cruciform and longer rotors on August 28, 2012 yielded (as yet unofficial) results of 65 seconds endurance on one flight and 8 ft altitude on another. 
AeroVelo began flight testing of its even larger Atlas quad rotor HPH on the same day, August 28, 2012.
 See also
- "Press Release, A. James Clark School of Engineering, University of Maryland". Eng.umd.edu. 2011-05-11. Retrieved 2012-10-18.
- 2:34 (2011-05-13). "Gamera takes off but fails to bag Sikorsky Prize". Ibtimes.com. Retrieved 2012-10-18.
- "Gamera Team Sets New Unofficial World Record for Human-Powered Helicopter Flight". Agrc.umd.edu. 2012-06-23. Retrieved 2012-10-18.
- "Upturn Human Powered Helicopter Flies!". Vtol.org. Retrieved 2012-10-18.
- "Gamera team continues setting records". Vtol.org. 2012-08-28. Retrieved 2012-10-18.
- "AHS Congratulates AeroVelo for Human Powered Helicopter First Flight!". Vtol.org. 2012-08-28. Retrieved 2012-10-18.
- Igor I. Sikorsky Human Powered Helicopter Competition - AHS International
- humanpoweredhelicopters.org - lists attempts to win the AHS Prize