Infographic: Here’s How To Make Airplanes Ultra Efficient
From Fast Company
November 27, 2012 - 9:25am
Blended wing aircraft are far more fuel efficient than the tube-and-wing designs the major airlines use. So why have we sided with inefficiency? Blended wing planes have been an inspiring idea since the 1920s. By flattening the whole plane, the entire fuselage generates lift, while the wings are used primarily for steering. This can purportedly lead to a lift-to-drag ratio that’s up to 50% better than conventional tube-wing (think commercial aircraft) designs. If such planes were just 10% more fuel efficient, the industry would save about $7 billion a year. Click to enlarge. For a project by Intel, student scientist Connor Lynch ran a wind tunnel model comparing these ideas, and then he passed the data to graphic designer Mikell Fine Iles. The result was the graphic you see here. It’s two planes both cutting through the air. The top is a blended wing craft; the bottom i...
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