Wednesday 25 July 2012

The Afghan engineer who builds drones

Drones are inextricably linked to Afghanistan and Pakistan, so it is rather wonderful to see an article about an Afghan who has developed his own fleet of pilotless aircraft.
Afghanistan Today has published the story of Zemaray Helalee, an engineer who for a day job runs the electricity supply in Nimroz Province in the south-west of the country. Mr Helalee has used scrap metal, wood and rubber, old clothing, pushchair wheels and chainsaw engines to build his fleet of six aircraft.
Mr Helalee with one of his prototypes
“My only goal in building these planes was to fulfil my childhood dreams,” says the 35-year-old electrical engineer, who was first inspired many years ago when his father, an aviation engineer, took him round Kabul airport. “I have always wanted to build planes myself and fly them without pilots.”
His most advanced drone to date uses a 150cc engine, weighs 50 kilos and can fly for 20 minutes, but he has already built a propeller-driven monoplane using a 350cc BMW engine at a total cost of around $6,000. His first test-flight will be in two months time.


Anonymous said...

Dear Author
Can I have contact details (ie phone number or e-mail address) of mr Zamaray Helalee. thanks.

Nick Fielding said...

Contact him via Afghanistan Today

Bakersfield Photographer said...

Wow, this is a great innovation! I wonder what other engines that an Afghanistan or Pakistan can create. This only shows how intelligent human beings are.