Background of Ultralight historical
Because there are as many terms to define Ultra or Microlight aircraft, as countries where they fly, we will here refer to some general information from Wikipedia which wraps up the standard and international definitions pretty well.
(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultralight_aviation). Also we adopted the Ecolight term to match our environmental concern
«Ultralight aviation (called microlight aviation in some countries) is the flying of lightweight, 1 or 2 seat fixed-wing aircraft. Some countries differentiate between weight shift and 3- axis aircraft, calling the former "microlight" and the latter "ultralight".
During the late 1970s and early 1980s, mostly stimulated by the hang gliding movement, many people sought affordable powered flight. As a result, many aviation authorities set up definitions of lightweight, slow-flying aeroplanes that could be subject to minimum regulations. The resulting aeroplanes are commonly called "ultralight aircraft" or "microlights", although the weight and speed limits differ from country to country. In Europe the sporting (FAI) definition limits the maximum take-off weight to 450 kg (992 lb) (472.5 kg (1,042 lb) if a ballistic parachute is installed) and a maximum stalling speed of 65 km/h (40 mph). The definition means that the aircraft has a slow landing speed and short landing roll in the event of an engine failure.
In most affluent countries, microlights or ultralight aircraft now account for a significant percentage of the global civilian-owned aircraft. For instance in Canada in October 2010, the ultralight aircraft fleet made up to 19% of the total civilian aircraft registered. In other countries that do not register ultralight aircraft, like the United States, it is unknown what proportion of the total fleet they make up. In countries where there is no specific extra regulation, ultralights are considered regular aircraft and subject to certification requirements for both aircraft and pilot. »
Each country, from Australia to United States, applies the certification to their Civil Aviation standards, but the general trend is actually to define them as a “recreational” aircraft able to take off from private terrains. Even within Europe the rules differ from Italy, to UK or France and Austria. In general the local Civil Aviation are governed or at least follow the International Air Sports Federation (http://www.fai.org)