Futuristic fun: Smithsonian to fly drones

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It’s a science fiction fan’s fantasy: drones, jet packs and “Star Trek” stars are poised to descend on Washington, D.C., as part of a futuristic festival.

Smithsonian Magazine obtained clearance from the Federal Aviation Administration to fly a jet pack and present a live drone flight as part of its "2014 The Future is Here Festival" in Washington from May 16 to 18.

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The clearance was needed for the demonstration of the hydrogen and nitrogen-powered jetpack in downtown Washington’s Woodrow Wilson Plaza because of the location’s close proximity to the White House. As a stipulation of the FAA clearance, ITK hears that the jet pack must stay below a certain height or risk being shot down. No pressure or anything.

Smithsonian’s Editor-in-Chief Michael Caruso said in a news release, “For years now, science fiction fans have been asking, ‘Where's my jet pack?’… We can't promise a jet pack to everybody who comes, but at least you can see whether you really want one.”

The fest will also feature a live drone flight inside the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center.

“Star Trek’s” George Takei will be on-hand for the sci-fi festivities and Sir Patrick Stewart will lead a Q&A session following an advanced screening of his new movie, “X-Men: Days of Future Past.”