Dutch airline company KLM announced that it is funding for the development of a V-shaped airplane in which passengers will be able to sit in the wings for increasing the fuel efficiency. The company added that the futuristic shape of the airplane will be highly aerodynamic and will be making the “Flying V” lighter. The designers of the airplane said that the carrier will need 20 percent lesser fuel than the most advanced aircraft present today, the Airbus A350.
According to researchers, the prototype version of the airplane will be ready by the upcoming fall. But the actual commencement of its services would not start till the year 2040. The idea for such a sustainable aircraft which is able to accommodate passengers along with cargo and fuel tanks in its wings was given by a student named Justus Benad from Technical University, Berlin. The concept was also developed further by Delft Technical University, Netherlands in cooperation with KLM.
KLM Royal Dutch Airlines was founded in the year 1919 and it is the oldest airplane company in the planet which has been operating under the original name. As of 2015, it employed a total of 35,488 employees and had a fleet of 119.
Similar to the highly advanced Airbus A350, the Flying V can carry 314 passengers and a total of 160 square metres of cargo which translates to 1722.23 square feet. On top of all these developments, it will have the same wingspan so that it can be used with the same gates and runways without any extra changes made.
The company declared that the V-shaped airplane will be able to make long distance travels with increased sustainability. The project leader at TU Delft, Roelof Vos declared that the size of Flying-V is smaller compared to Airbus A350 along with lesser inflow surface area in the available volume. The result of these changes is lesser resistance which also translates to lesser fuel requirements for the same length of travel.
The airplane has deployed the state-of-art turbofan engines which are highly efficient, as per the company sources. Although the present model is run on kerosene it can be adapted in the future so that it can use electric turbofans.
Vos said that as a result of these incremental changes, Flying V can help the Dutch aviation sector in meeting the sustainability goals. The sector wants to reduce the aviation carbon dioxide emissions by a margin of 35 percent by 2030, with more passengers flying. The first model will be tested at low speeds to check its stability.