During the Awards Ceremony of the 106th FAI General Conference in Antalya, Turkey, on Thursday, Todd Reichert was named as the the winner of the Prince Alvaro de Orleans Borbon Grant for a human-powered helicopter project called 'Atlas'.
The AeroVelo team, co-founded and led by Reichert and Cameron Robertson (pictured, L-R), works in collaboration with the Human-Powered Vehicle Design Team at the University of Toronto. Over the last five years nearly 100 students have been involved in the various human-powered projects such as the Snowbird Human-Powered Ornithopter and high-speed streamlined bicycles.
By awarding this prize to Reichert, the FAI Executive Board said it wished to recognize his activity blending science, technology and sport, which is not only academic in nature, but also highly visible to the public and media organizations. The unique projects that Todd Reichert, Cameron Robertson and AeroVelo have developed have become symbols for creativity and encourage youth participation and interest in sport aviation. The FAI Executive Directors were also convinced by the fact that this project was not only the result of innovative research but also directly enhanced the capability and understanding of students.
"Cameron and I were absolutely ecstatic after hearing news of the award. Not only does it recognise our efforts on an international scale and give us motivation to continue our work, but it also provides the crucial funding to do so. The direct impact of this grant means more projects like the Snowbird Human-Powered Ornithopter and the Atlas Human-Powered Helicopter, more hands on learning for students, and more public attention for aviation," said Todd Reichert.
The $20,000 Prince Alvaro de Orleans Borbon Grant is awarded to persons or institutions who have devoted themselves to create and/or promote technical developments and innovation in sport aviation. It is in principle (but not necessarily) awarded every two years with the goal of supporting research and innovation focused on the advancement of sport aviation and simulated flying.