Typical hobbyist model airplanes are dainty versions of the real thing. You can tuck them under your arm and walk around.
A 1:2 scale model of a Saab Gripen fighter jet, however, is a beast among bunnies. The massive model, painted in blue and yellow, met a sorrowful fate during a flight when it disintegrated in the air. RC Media World posted a dramatic video of the event to YouTube on Saturday.
The plane appears to be participating in a model airplane event at a German airfield. It got off the ground just fine and executed a series of basic flying maneuvers leading into a lovely midair roll. The Saab model then unexpectedly starts to come apart, starting at the rear of the plane where the engine is located.
The failure is catastrophic and cries can be heard from the crowd. Debris scatters over a wide area and an emergency team heads out to inspect the wreckage and put out any fires. It's a sad loss, given the time spent on building and preparing the plane. The only comfort is that it was a model and not carrying a real pilot.