Festo SmartBird and eMotionButterflies in Chinese TV show


Our Airstage technicians expertly piloting both the Festo SmartBird and eMotionButterflies (starts at 03.20) for the Official HunanTV program My future -  a Chinese reality-variety show that features futuristic technologies - on 20th August 2017.

Airstage CEO's Rainer and Günther Mugrauer are longstanding members of the Festo Bionics Network - a group of universities, institutes and development companies who cooperate to research and develop new technology carriers using innovative bionics.

Since 2007, Airstage has been instrumental in the development, construction and operation of many ground breaking R&D bionic flight projects and won several awards for their work.
The expertise gained in such R&D projects enables us to incorporate such cutting edge technology into our flying models and control systems.


John Barker
Flying BMW Car for TV Show

Behind the scenes rehearsal for the popular TV show "Verstehen Sie Spass" (equivalent to Candid Camera).

Our radio controlled ultralight BMW model has a "dead weight" of just 5 kg (10 pounds), and once the helium sleeve inside the car is filled the "flying weight" is around 40 grams (1.7 ounces). 


John Barker
Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon
Photo credit: Andrew Lipovski/NBC @FallonTonight

Photo credit: Andrew Lipovski/NBC @FallonTonight

Our crew (the guys in black...) were on hand to pilot the 4 bionic eMotionButterflies from Festo that were demonstrated in the "Showbotics" segment of the Tonight Show starring Jimmy Fallon on Tuesday 25th April 2017.

Watch the video here

Our pilots would like it to be known that the initial "fail" flight was intentional as part of the show and not a piloting error..... although the collision with Jimmy at the end of the segment is debatable...! 

John Barker

“Our company’s philosophy is about engaging and entertaining our guests, and using our resources to make the experience of coming to Madison Square Garden an event,” - says Marc Bauman (Senior Vice President, Executive Producer, Creative and Technical Production Services Group at the Madison Square Garden Company) in this months "Lighting & Sound America" magazine.

The final part of the article titled "Special Effects" outlines how the Airstage Aerial Camera - AirCamOne - has been incorporated into the complete fan experience for the "New York Rangers" hockey team and the "New York Knicks" basketball teams at the world's most famous arena.

Read the complete article here

John Barker

"The word drone doesn't go down too well" - Bob Barnhart lighting designer for Lady Gaga's Super Bowl Halftime Show with the INTEL drones.

“In NHL and NBA parlance, you can have blimps in the arena; you can’t fly a drone in New York unless you have a FAA license, and that’s a really complicated process.
This (Aerial Camera Orb) has helium in it, so we don’t call it a drone
” -  Marc Bauman, senior vice president, executive producer, creative and technical production services group at The Madison Square Garden Company.

These statements underline the negativity that abounds in the minds of regulators and indeed the general public when confronted with drone safety issues.  

At Airstage, we are also very meticulous not to use the word "drone" when referring to our aerial shows - but for a different reason: We do not construct or operate drones!
Unlike drones, our radio controlled ultra-light helium based models and forms can be safely flown over an audience, irrespective of pilot controlled or autonomously controlled.

A recent white paper titled "Drone Shows Creative Potential + Best Practices" assessed the current drone technology and it's potential uses for live performances.
Although we were flattered to be included in this well written document, the term "lighter-than-air-drones" is not a correct description of our products and services.  

John Barker
this video went VIRAL ON YOUTUBE

A few weeks back this video of our radio controlled airliner at a model aircraft convention in Germany was viewed over 185.000 times and brought a surge of interest from clients around the world. 
Our helium based airliners can be branded with an airlines livery or marketing message and are ideal for promotion events for airport terminals or any other large enclosed area.

The airliner is available for hire under: info@airstage.biz

Due to the helium support and the aerodynamic flight control, the airliner flies slowly but has the same flight characteristics as the original

Wingspan: approx. 4.60 meters (15 feet)
Length of body: approx. 4.90 meters (16 feet)
Material weight:  approx. 850 grams (30 ounces)
Weight for flying when filled with helium: approx. 200 grams (7 ounces)
Propulsion: Impeller 2 x brushless electric motors
Battery: 2 cell LiPo battery
Flight control: exactly as in an original aircraft with ailerons and rudder
Flight time: 15 to 20 minutes (depending on battery, this can be longer)
Construction: helium gas in the fuselage (not in the wings). Fix wings constructed from depron (extruded polystyrene foam) and carbon fibre supports
Radio control: Graupner system with 2,4 GHz frequency
Flight area: min.25 x 25 meters, height min. 6 meters


Thanks to "RC RC RC" for the video.


John Barker

We were back in Vegas in March, this time at the ExhibitorLive Trade Show at the Mandalay Bay where we demonstrated our latest range of ultralight helium based AirOrbs.

Mini AirCam

For indoor situations this ultralight helium based "go anywhere" aerial camera can deliver video feeds that are not possible with boom cameras or even spider cams because it can be safely flown over an audience or performers.

Diameter: 115 centimeters / 45 inches
Dead weight including batteries, camera, avionics, etc: 800 grams / 28 ounces
Operation flying weight: 20 grams / 0.70 ounces !
Max speed: 4.7 kmh /  3 mph
Flight time on one battery: max 15 minutes
Onboard video camera and transmitter: Amimon Connex ProSight

Mini AirOrb

Our smallest AirOrb is fast, virtually silent and can be fitted with internal RGB LED lighting that is in turn preprogrammed and synched to timecode signal. From single or multiple pilot controlled units to a a fleet of AirOrbs autonomously flying through a preprogrammed choreography, complete with changing interior lighting, these AirOrbs can be flown in any indoor environment and even over an audience. 

Diameter: 73 centimeters / 29 inches
Dead weight including batteries, camera, avionics, etc: 300 grams / 10.6 ounces
Operation flying weight: 10 grams / 0.35 ounces !
Max speed: 6.5 kmh /  4 mph
Flight time on one battery: max 8 minutes

John Barker

With Airstage flying objects installed in Madison Square Garden and Radio City Music Hall, New York has become somewhat of a second home to us.

But not only these two prestigious venues; Trade Shows, Art Shows, Corporate Events, Marketing Campaigns and Touring Shows regularly keep our crews travelling between Stuttgart and New York. 

Following on from the Armory Show Art Exhibition at the beginning of March, we were back in New York at the Interphex Trade Show in the Javits Center from 21-23 March 2017 where our crew demonstrated the amazing Festo AquaJelly:

AquaJelly is an artificial autonomous jellyfish in water, a self-controlling system which emulates swarming behaviour. AquaJelly consists of a translucent hemisphere and eight tentacles for propulsion. At the centre of the AquaJelly is a watertight laser-sintered body. It houses a central electric motor, the two lithium-ion polymer batteries, the recharging control unit and the servo motors for the swash plate.

John Barker
Airstage Takes Off Into Theme Park Entertainment

In 2014 Airstage entered the world of Theme Park Entertainment with the installation of 16 choreographed flying AirOrbs that flew daily in one of the world's biggest indoor theme parks - Lotte World in Seoul, Korea.
This installation caught the imagination of the Theme Park industry and various trade publications published articles about the many applications that Airstage can offer for Theme Parks.

One of these online publications interviewed John R. Barker (Head of Sales at Airstage.biz).

Read the full article here

John Barker