Published on September 9th, 2012 | by Steven Hodson0
“Smarter Skies” And Flocking Like Birds Could Be Part Of Aviation’s Future [Video]
Short of jet fuel becoming either non-existent or horrendously expensive planes will be with us for a very long time, but that doesn’t meant that we shouldn’t be finding ways to make flying around the world a better and more responsible method of travel.
Needless to say companies in the industry are always looking for ways to improve much like some suggestions recently from Airbus as the company looks forward to 2050.
Two of their proposals are interesting as one looks to mimic nature and the other looks to robots for inspiration. The first would have planes that are going in the same general direction join together in an aerodynamic formation, much like how birds will fly as a flock, in an effort to reduce drag, save energy, and fly more quickly to their destinations.
The second proposal would utilize robot-assisted take-off for passenger jets; much like jet fighters on aircraft carriers, which would allow for shorter runways and allow planes to reach their cruising speed much faster and in the process produce less carbon emissions.
The French airplane manufacturer says its “Smarter Skies plant will cut fuel consumption by 15 percent, carbon emissions by 28 million tons, as well as flight times in both the United States and Europe by an average of 13 minutes. Those savings would come in smoother take-offs and landings and the boost of flying like a flock of birds.”