Saturday, July 07, 2007

Evidence of Aeroplanes

The new Boeing 787 is a step in the right direction as far as the organisers of Live Earth are concerned (although I suppose they'd probably prefer that no one flew at all unless it was absolutely necessary).

However it is interesting that the two big players in aircraft manufacture seem to be traveling in opposite directions as far as solving the problems facing air travel are concerned. Boeing is going for a smaller, lower carbon-dioxide emitting, aircraft, and Airbus are going for a bigger-is-better approach.

Airbus claims the A380 is more "fuel efficient" than a car, averaging an equivalent of around 90 mpg.

Meanwhile Boeing claims the Dreamliner offers "unmatched fuel efficiency, resulting in exceptional environmental performance".

Of course my preference for a 21st century aeroplane would be a scaled-up version of the non-polluting Smartfish hydrogen-powered plane.

I've commented before that I feel that the idea of a "hydrogen economy" is overrated as far as automobiles are concerned. I reckon there is a great deal of potential in electric cars of various types.

However for aeroplanes hydrogen-power makes sense. It is light-weight and as kerosene (which is normally used as aircraft fuel) is fairly hazardous, there would be less of a jolt as far as transport and storage are concerned compared with replacing petrol in cars.

Anyway the Smartfish looks great.

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