Back to the future: Texas cops fly a high-tech version of 1923 autogyro

Police in Tomball, Texas, are flying a high-tech version of an aircraft first flown in 1923, an autogyro, a tiny open aircraft with no doors that's much cheaper to own and fly than helicopters, Matt Hardigee of Jalopnick reports in Wired.

The aircraft uses rear-mounted propeller to get speed. Then, an angled, unpowered overhead rotor uses the air pushed into the blades to create lift, the article explained.

The Tomball police are the first in the nation to use the aircraft, which needs about 100 yards to take off, climbs at 13 feet per second, can hit 115 mph, and hover at a relatively low speed, the story explains.

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