Airbus announces Smarter Skies 2050 plan for air travel
Monday, September 10, 2012
European planemaker Airbus announced its plans for the future of air travel in its latest installment of the Future by Airbus. The plan considers sustainability and time efficiency in addition to aircraft design and operation.
The company promotes the use of software and advanced technologies to map more efficient routes. Airbus predicts that through the use of new technologies, routes will be based not only on direct mileage but also on current weather conditions. Business travelers will find more time-efficient technology a welcome improvement, as many hurry to meetings and corporate suites directly after disembarkation.
Other proposed advancements keep sustainability issues and carbon emissions in mind. For its most popular flights, Airbus envisions flying one larger plane and several smaller planes together in a birdlike formation. This can help reduce drag, making travel more efficient. This formation can help reduce drag, making travel more efficient in terms of emissions per flight.
Another innovation would require the use of a propelled platform with a set of wheels which would carry the plane during takeoff and allow the plane to conserve fuel and reach cruise altitude faster. Airbus also wants to incorporate alternative fuels into airplane design, and wants to make use of increased efficiency to cut down on runway space.
"As space becomes a premium and mega-cities become a reality, this approach could also minimize land use, as shorter runways could be utilised," Airbus stated in its latest installment of the Future by Airbus.