Thursday, 23 May 2013

Efficient Flight


As revision has drained most of the creativity and inspiration from me I decide to write a post on my previously mentioned extended project.

The main reason that I decided to undertake an extended project was to be able to put it in my personal statement for university. For now we’ll assume it did well in its primary purpose as I got 5 offers. As a secondary reason for writing it, I thought it might be quite nice to research and write about something that I am actually interested in. The project definitely did well in this respect as I enjoyed finding out about what’s going on in the world of aviation, but more on the interesting stuff in a second. It also did well at keeping me entertained on many train journeys all over the country, I haven’t a clue what I would have done instead.

If you do wish to read the whole project or at least glance through it then you can find it at

If you don’t wish to bore yourself with my slightly more formal writing then I shall try to give a more entertaining overview here.
Have you ever looked up at a flock a birds flying in formation? Ever thought it’s pretty cool? (Maybe you’re not as weird me if you answered no to the second.) Anyway, if you now have the iconic image of geese flying in a V formation in your head...good. Now swap the geese for passenger airliners and tell me that that as an idea isn’t cool. It gets even better when you learn that all the aircraft in the formation would experience an increase in efficiency, even the front one.

If that’s not interesting enough for you, then how does flying at 10 times the speed of sound on the edge of space sound? This would be one of the most efficient ways to fly and would cut journey times down dramatically.

Flying quickly isn’t the only cool thing in the future; taking off quickly using catapult launchers like those on aircraft carriers is also in the realms of possibility. Okay, so maybe they wouldn’t be quite so intense, but assisted takeoffs and landings are looking to be the future of air travel. They’ll save fuel and allow larger aircraft to use smaller, city based airports.

Finally, meet the aircraft of the future; blended wings, supersonic speeds and assisted takeoffs.
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