Hybrid AirVehicles Carries the Torch Reviving Travel by Blimp
By Cameron Gibney
When one thinks of modern-day air travel, blimps may not immediately come to mind. But at Hybrid AirVehicles, their mission is to reintroduce this age-old aircraft in a more innovative, modern light.
“There is a driving purpose behind everything we do: to rethink the skies,” reads the ‘About Us’ page on Hybrid AirVehicles’ official website.
There was a time when airships like these were a viable transport option, until the crash of the German Zeppelin the Hindenberg in 1939.
This UK-based company has revealed some stunning visuals of the interior of their aircraft that may leave you drooling. The passenger blimps produced by Hybrid AirVehicles, however, have yet to be introduced for commercial travel.
Up to 18 passengers can enjoy the whisper-quiet ride in total luxury and a big surprise–the floors is made of glass so the view 16,000 feet down is quite scary.
Their flagship aircraft, the Airlander 10, packs some impressive feats along with it. Among those is a five-day maximum of
airborne travel, a 10-ton maximum payload, and a maximum altitude of 20,000 feet. You can read more about their fleet here.
Why Blimp Travel?
Sustainability. At least with Hybrid AirVehicles, modern blimp travel appears to be a no-brainer for the ethical traveler.
The company has detailed that the Airlander 10 leaves behind a minimal carbon footprint.
“The technology at the heart of the Airlander 10 creates significant efficiency in flight. With four combustion engines, the standard Airlander 10 will deliver up to 75% reduction in emissions over comparable aircraft in a wide range of roles,” reads the eco-friendly analysis, titled “The Path to a Zero-Carbon Airlander 10”.
Another feat of the aircraft is its all-electric engines, which are expected to be in service by 2030.
While the world still eagerly awaits commercial travel on these airships, many have already speculated the full potential of blimp travel with Hybrid AirVehicles.
One 2017 independent report by Renaissance Strategic Advisors predicted: “the market for primary Airlander sales over the next 20 years to be $46 billion, representing over 500 aircraft.”
The unique characteristics of hybrid aircraft mean that they have applications across a variety of markets
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