NOTHING IS ALLOWED TO GO UP IN THE AIR
„No matter if it is a hot-air balloon, a glider or an airbus – nothing is allowed to go up in the air until the Federal Agency Of Aviation - founded in Brunswick in 1954 – has granted the required permission"
Quote from FAZ, March 11th, 1998
That is why we did our flying experiments in secret - on glaciers off the trails. In France it was easier. No certificates were needed there. That is why the boom started near the Swiss-French border. Everything that is not prohibited is permitted; for the French it was as simple as that. In Germany on the other hand paragliding was not legalized until 1987.
FEDERAL AGENCY OF AVIATION - SAMA PERMISSION AS FOR HANG-GLIDERS?
According to an inquiry sent to Fritz Bigler, inspector for engine-inoperative flight at the Federal Agency of Aviation, the specialist had not yet heard of the device. Bigler said that licensed parachutists holding liability insurance may also use this chute for launching off the ground. He could not yet make an official statement on how the regulation should be applied to beginners. He
expects the new chute to be covered by the hang-glider regulations, though. In his opinion it would be easiest if the paragliding schools joined the Hang-Glider Association.
DESCRIPTION OF THE DEVICE IN THE TAGESANZEIGER, MARCH 8TH, 1984
OVERSIZED MATTRESS PARACHUTE
In a nutshell, the newly developed piece of sport equipment - which offers many possible uses - is an oversized mattress parachute. 18 airchambers open at the front, closed at the back and taking a winglike shape, make the 9m wide chute go up in the air as soon as the wind enters one of the
chambers. Two steering tethers sewn into the main tethers allow for a precise control of the light chute (6 kg). The simply constructed tether system has been entirely developed by inventor Dieter Strasilla. Already at a wind force of one Beaufort (1-15 km/h), the chute soars into the air on its own. Thanks to its size (more than 40m in diameter) and its aerodynamically favorable shape the chute has a good gliding ratio of about 4:1. Thereby it has become possible to sail down slopes and mountains. When flying forwards, the rate of descent is 1-2 m/s so that skillfull touchdowns turn out gentle. In good thermal conditions it is even possible to soar several hundred meters in an upwind tube and stay in the air for considerable time.
Dieter Soaring at the Pacific in California