Become a Patron! For the thrill of it!
The Doclopedia #2,001
Dangerous Inventions: Doctor Fenlie’s Jetpack
Doctor Olias Fenlie invented his first, and sadly last, jetpack in 1886. Sleek and made from a steel alloy of his own creation, the jetpack attached to the body via a leather suit. Hand controls would allow the wearer to control the small wings for turning and changing altitude. A clear glass helmet would allow breathing even at higher altitudes, while also giving an excellent field of vision.
The first few tests of the jetpack worked well, but were only done at an altitude of 300 feet at 25% power. For his high altitude speed run, to be done at 2,500 feet and a speed of 150 miles an hour, Fenlie made some adjustments to both his controls and his secret fuel mixture, both of which proved to be a fatal error.
After slowly ascending to 500 feet above a crowd of over 5,000 people, Doctor Fenlie pressed the accelerator button and almost instantly went to full power. His fuel, which not only burned hotter, but was accidentally pressurized to 4 times normal, burned out in 30 seconds, pushing him to a speed near 500 miles an hour and taking him miles into the stratosphere. The force caused him to lose consciousness.
When he hit the peak of his flight and the jetpack shut off, the unconscious Fenlie fell back to Earth 6o miles from where he had started, crashing into a densely forested area. His body was not found for 3 months.
The remains of his jetpack are now on display at the Oregon Museum of Technology & Science.
The Doclopedia # 2,002
Dangerous Inventions: Professor Chandra’s Tank
The modern military tank as we know it first appeared in 1903. However, 12 years earlier, in 1891, Professor Chandra of the University of Delhi, invented a most marvelous tank.
Roughly the size of a modern delivery truck, but half again as wide, the tank was steam powered and clad in “Chandranite” armor, which was light and extraordinarily strong. Traveling on metal treads, it could reach speeds of 25 miles an hour. It boasted two cannons front and rear and three on each side. It was also capable of firing flamethrowers from the sides and rear.
But most amazing of all was the fact that the tank did not need a human drew. Using the latest difference engine and metal discs instead of punch cards, the tank could be programmed to go into enemy territory, fire away from all sides, then, when out of ammunition or when a preset series of maneuvers were done, return the way it came.
The first test of the tank was scheduled to take place in a large open area 5 miles outside of Delhi. Scientists and military men from around the world were on hand to watch the tank destroy a mock up of a village.
Everything went well until the tank was nearly finished. Then, it hit a large crater caused by it’s cannon fire and broke part if it’s suspension. The shock of hitting the crater caused the metal disc reader to reset, so the tank took off again, but this time it was pointed toward the city. It had started from 3 miles in the city, so it drove, at full speed, 8 miles back in. Then it began firing it’s weaponry. The death and destruction were horrible/
Then, the tank repeated it’s programming. And repeated again. Finally, our of ammunition and stuck on rubble, it stopped. Thedeath toll was in the thousands and about a quarter of the town was destroyed by fire.
Professor Chandra quietly disappeared and was never seen again.