The future is going to be all about design - sustainable design in particular. This is a hot topic amongst the thinkers of today, probably because it is the biggest factor that will determine how our future is shaped.
Airbus, one of the biggest manufacturers of commercial jets, has taken a few steps to address this issue at their own small level. Just ahead of the 2011 Paris Air Show, the company unveiled its highly futuristic concept airplane.
At first sight, the plane looks like a comic book superhero’s own private luxury jet. For instance, Airbus claims that the sleek fuselage will be built of intelligent membranes which would turn transparent at the touch of a button, giving the passengers in flight a surreal view of the outside surroundings. There wouldn’t be any class divisions and passengers would be seated in uniform arrangements. Every area, however, will have personalized customizable zones. Also, each seat will independently reshape to fit the body shape of every passenger. On less than full capacity flights, seats would automatically fold and readjust to give the passengers extra space. Furthermore, the flight will have a “Vitalizing Zone” for relaxation purposes, a “Tech Zone” for working and staying connected, and an “Interactive Zone” which will feature games and other electronic entertainment.
The plane is a part of Airbus’s research project titled “A Vision of Aviation in 2050”. Charles Champion, the head of Engineering and Airbus, predicts that travellers will like an environmentally friendly and smooth flying experience. The transparent cabin will give a feeling of proximity with nature. Other facilities on the airplane will prove the modern traveller with the convenience and luxury he demands. In short, as Mr. Champion says, “The Airbus Concept Cabin is designed with that in mind, and shows that the journey can be as much a voyage of discovery as the destination.”
Of course, the plane does look more like a cool gadget that can only be seen in a science fiction movie, but Airbus engineers say that it could very well become reality, especially since such radical ideas are gaining steam in the aeronautical and aerospace industries. And if that is what reality in the future will look like, we certainly wish Airbus success in their endeavour.