Chinese Villager Builds His Own Zeppelin, Proves It Can Fly

Chinese Villager Builds His Own Zeppelin 6 photos
Photo: Shanghaiist
Chinese Villager Builds His Own ZeppelinChinese Villager Builds His Own ZeppelinChinese Villager Builds His Own ZeppelinChinese Villager Builds His Own ZeppelinChinese Villager Builds His Own Zeppelin
The Chinese communist government may be busy sending a huge solar-powered craft up in the skies, but that never stopped this young Henan farmer from following his dream. The aviation aficionado knew he would one day find a way to reach the skies, and that’s exactly what he did recently when he flew the Zeppelin he made himself for the first time.
As we were telling you recently, China started a 24-hour test flight of its largest airship in Xilinhot, Inner Mongolia. The massive, 18,000-cubic meter (635,664-cubic foot) craft is 75 meters (246 feet) long and 22 meters (72 feet) tall and was designed to fly in near-space, which is anywhere between 20 to 100 km (12 to 62 miles) altitude. Sure, this is a high-tech, military contraption created for radar and imaging purposes.

This thing here is the brainchild of a young farmer who is that passionate about all things aviation-related that he even dropped school to chase his dream. According to Shanghaiist, 29-year-old Shi Songbo says that he has always had a fascination with flight and really wanted to try it for himself.

He spent 300,000 yuan ($47,224 at the current exchange rate) to build a 23-meter long, 10-meter tall dirigible. His first flight on Sunday took him 500 meters into the air and lasted for nearly two hours, apparently. During his first attempt, the young innovator made eight smooth sets of landings and takeoffs.

According to the source, Shi claims he had dropped off school when he was just 17 years old to chase his dream, one that started back in primary school when he looked through the pictures of planes inside one of his older brother’s books. After he had stopped attending classes, he joined an aero model manufacturing company where he’d learn how to build an aircraft. When he decided it was time, he quit the job and devoted to his project.
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