The World’s Biggest BUM Just Got Bigger
Our Automologist MAC likes (this) big bum and he cannot lie…
Sometime last year, we announced the arrival of the world’s largest aircraft, the Airlander 10. This can be best described as a hybrid-aircraft-vehicle-blimp-thingy. Well, it is back and it is bigger than ever. Now measuring 320 feet long, it has been given the rather unfortunate nickname of the flying BUM. Look at the picture above…
Back to the serious stuff. Now, the Airlander 10 has been designed as an aircraft with multiple uses—ideal for getting to places where conventional aircraft cannot, such as disaster areas. In the future, it will be powered by a hybrid power system that is being developed by Collins Aerospace and the University of Nottingham. It is hoped that this will allow for 90% less emissions than conventional air transport.
On top of this are minimal infrastructure needs and relative quietness. The Flying Bum, sorry, Airlander 10, is capable of carrying a 10-tonne payload and can be in the air for five days, with a range of just about 4,500 miles and an operational ceiling of 12,500 metres. The drag has also been reduced by altering the new shape a little and altering the positioning of the propulsion systems.
Of course, the makers claim that the Airlander 10 has a number of applications, ranging from defence to luxury travel and are currently trying to get airworthiness approval from both the US and European bodies. Judging by the brochure, it is the luxury market that the HAV (Hybrid Air Vehicle) is heading into with the Airlander 10.
And for a mere US$42 million, I am absolutely sure there will be a few millionaires who fancy taking a slow flight over the Arctic or Amazon rainforest in their eco-friendly aircraft.