The geniuses at Darpa have had another brainstorm: a high-powered ejector seat designed to forcibly shoot an unfortunate soul onto a roof, instantly. It should wow onlooking crowds at house fires and hostage situations alike.An inclined (ha) member of the military or emergency services simply seats themselves -- and in around two seconds experiences what can only be described as being 'sneezed' to a height of five stories.Existing circus cannons fall outside the FCS framework, so once again the Pentagon has turned to Darpa to pick up the slack. Of course, Darpa were happy to provide their inspiration in the patent:"Circuses have amused crowds by shooting performers out of cannons. For recreational enjoyment, certain traditional devices for launching subjects catapult subjects to experience a free-fall sensation similar to the sensation of bungee jumping or skydiving. Aircraft ejection seat technology and aircraft carrier launching systems, such as catapults, are also capable of launching payloads, however, most of these designs have unpredictable and uncontrollable trajectories and/or cannot be immediately reset and reused."I'm glad to see they did their research; it's been a tough year since 'Captain Crazy Clowns Emergency Roof Cannons' filed for bankruptcy - all those burnt cats..."What is therefore needed is a launcher that is controllable, and able to launch payloads through a repeatable and predictable trajectory. Furthermore, the launcher should have a substantially short recycle time thus a user can launch another payload in a relatively short time after the previous launch."And consider his life insurance plans, while he's at it.Unfortunately this "man-cannon" is a rather bulky device requiring multiple hands get around and construct. Plus, I think it looks like a contraption from Hustler, patiently waiting for a C-list celebrity to straddle it on the The Howard Stern Show.For regular folk (and members of Voltron Force), there is an alternative on the market: the 'Rescue Rocket' line, comprised of compressed-air launched grappling hooks, should handle the needs of most Batmen. The new-fangled devices known as 'ladders' should take care of the rest.-- Steven Snell
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