Bird flying high: 7 trends of civil aviation

The Plane is one of the most convenient, safe and fast vehicles of today. For several decades humanity moves from one point to another world through the air like birds, and not even think about what would happen to civil aviation in 30-50 years.

Revision Droider on the occasion of day of memory of Maurice Farman, aviation pioneer and the Creator of the world's first passenger aircraft, decided to look to the future. We present 7 trends facing aviation "for the people".

“Green” aviation

By 2050, the civil aviation once and for all solve the problem of environmental pollution. According to experts, global air traffic will increase 7 times, so the problem is relevant today. However, the decision seems on the surface — a complete or partial transition to alawali. In other words, electrification of passenger aircraft. Forget about emissions of carbon dioxide and nitrogen oxides — it's time to “eat” from the battery.

By the way, Boeing engineers already are working to create the first hybrid aircraft. The concept of the SUGAR (Subsonic Ultra Green Aircraft Research) according to the most optimistic estimates will allow airlines to save up to 70% of conventional fuels through the use of electric batteries. To charge such a plane would be directly from the power systems of airports. In the case of SUGAR conventional fuel will be needed only for takeoff. As soon as the chassis comes off the ground, and the pilot reach the required altitude, the engine will switch to electricity.

Unfortunately, in the world of batteries that can hold a huge edifice in the air. Experts also hope to find a ready solution by 2030.

The Plane on solar batteries

Electricity is a good thing, but only if it wouldn't be any problems. At the height of several thousand feet, the Sun seems closer, so it is not surprising that engineers are seriously considering the main star of our galaxy as a reliable source of energy for the aircraft. Moreover, to convert sunlight we have learned.

The Solar Impulse hard at work developing aircraft, powered solely by the Sun, storing the energy in batteries. The aircraft is equipped with 4 electric motors, are covered with 12,000 solar cells and weighs only 1.6 tons.

the First official flight such a machine, which lasted 26 hours, took place in 2009. Then manned a solar-powered aircraft made a flight across North America, starting in San Francisco and landing in new York. For 2015, the creators, and in combination, and the pilots of the airplane, the Swiss Bertrand Piccard and Andre Borschberg, are going to travel around the world on an enhanced version of the machine.

New engines

Aviation needs new engines. For several years now a team of 30 engineers working on the engine of dreams, which will allow to carry out flights at a speed of 6,500 km/h. With such a value can be, for example, to fly from London to Sydney in just 4 hours. Impressive, isn't it? By the way, today's average cruising speed of the aircraft froze on the "modest" level of 750-900 km/h. However, time does not stand still, and the appetite of airlines grow.

The Engineering Bureau scientists from Oxfordshire, led by Alan bond time was not wasted and showed the world the Sabre engine, which will allow you to move 5 times faster than sound. On the idea of the inventors, the brainchild of will operate in two modes: jet and rocket. When the first working version of Alan bond and the company do not give any information.

By the way, there is an alternative solution — the engine on hydrogen fuel, which in 2008 has already passed successful tests. The development of the hydrogen aircraft is engaged in design office of the Boeing company. Then the ship has successfully made 3 small flights in Spain. Despite the successful tests, the experts are very skeptical about using this kind of motors on large machines. Still, hydrogen is a dangerous thing.

Flying cars

Those who are older, will remember the movies where people moved fast flying cars. It was a futuristic boom, but very soon the dreams of the conquest of the air vehicles can become a reality. The world already has a few prototypes of these machines, but they are all in the testing phase.

For Example, the specialists of the company Terrafugia has introduced a model private autocomlete Transition with some nuance — it is more a plane than a car. For takeoff colossus required about 500 meters of perfect roadway. Needless to say about the management that was horrible. The next version of the TF-X does not require a runway and is capable of speeds up to 350 km/h. In such a device can, for example, to fly from Moscow to St. Petersburg without refueling. While this concept and serial venture to say very early. According to the most optimistic forecasts, a "avtolet" will hit the market in 2021.

Regular space flights

Flying cars — it is certainly good, but how about we aim higher? For example, in space. There are representatives of mankind are already more than 50 years. However, the conquest is given to us with great difficulty. Yes, and to fly in space until you can afford either the most brave and healthy representatives of the terrestrial civilization, or the most wealthy.

The Company Virgin Galactic, is known for ambitious plans to organize tourist suborbital space flights, has no plans to restrict the activities of space tourism. In particular, the specialists of the company suggest that their technology will bring air travel to a whole new level.

The Suborbital spacecraft Space Ship Two will be delivered to the carrier aircraft White Knight Two to a height of 15 km, and then separated to continue the flight. According to estimates, such a journey will last 4 hours and allow the person to be at this time in any point of the globe. As for the tickets, their average cost is estimated at about 200 thousand dollars. In the future, Virgin Galactic is planning to significantly reduce prices to the level of an expensive first class ticket passenger liner.

New form of aircraft

The Aircraft will be in that whatever was to seek the path to perfection from the standpoint of aerodynamic efficiency. The wings of the birds still can not compete with those that suggested once leading engineers. In this century our view of how it should look like the plane will crash. And apparently, the inspiration will need to look at mother nature.

“I think that the imagination of nature is much better human, she never allows us to relax,” claimed Richard Feynman, one of the greatest physicists of the 20th century.

Reducing the cost of fuel will force engineers to rethink the design of the aircraft. After coming into the everyday life of “green” aviation, the next step will be the integration of a propeller propulsion system that will dramatically improve the maneuverability of aircraft. Which ultimately will allow to refuse from elevators, rudders and tail stabilizers, without which currently can not do almost none of the plane.

By the way, the first engineering solution has already been presented. The Box Wing concept, developed by the specialists of the American company Lockheed Martin, will allow to increase by 16% the ratio of lift force to the drag of the wings that reduce fuel consumption.

The Return of supersonic airplanes

After the Anglo-French Concord and the “carcasses” of passenger aircraft, not seen supersonic aircraft. Then the cost of fuel was too high (about 25 t/h at “Concord” vs 2.5 t/h in a modern Boeing 737), and ticket prices could reach $ 3,000. The rejection of the supersonic in favor of the cheaper flights was quite understandable.

Technology does not stand still, and the industry requires more speed, so of supersonic Airliners had to remember again. Problems faced by engineers, has accumulated a lot. First, new cars will have to reduce “sonic boom” — overload experienced by the passengers when the aircraft is the speed of sound.

In 2010, the designers Lockheed Martin in conjunction with NASA, introduced the Supersonic Green Machine. Unlike Concorde, the aircraft received the engine, a variable cycle, which saves on fuel and makes the flight more “clean”.

In Russia, as elsewhere in the world, also thinking about the return of supersonic. Domestic project “the Plane-2020” is a set of technological innovations that will form the basis of the “plane of the future.” One of these is “supersonic aircraft of the new generation”.

“Today we're talking about supersonic aircraft of the new generation, which from the point of view of the market will be a niche in business aviation. This is an expensive car, focused on the wealthy, which is important the time factor.

It has been over 40 years since the establishment of the Tu-144, which, along with the Anglo-French Concorde was a first-generation supersonic passenger aircraft. These machines refused for reasons of efficiency (supersonic flight more expensive than subsonic), as well as the problems associated with a sound kick. We made significant progress in supersonic technologies and better understand how to look like a supersonic aircraft. There are serious developments for reducing sonic boom,” — said interview “Izvestia” Executive Director of TSAGI Sergey Chernyshev.