Lasted edited by Andrew Munsey, updated on June 14, 2016 at 8:44 pm.
An index of clean or energy-efficient flight concepts, prototypes, and available products relating to human flight.
Directory:Hydrogen > Green Skies at Mach 5 - Hydrogen-burning A2 hypersonic airliner by Reaction Engines could fly at Mach-5 (3,400mph)--more than twice as fast as the Concorde--carrying 300 passengers, without producing a trace of carbon emissions. (Popular Science Jan. 23, 2008)
Moved to Directory:Jetpacks
Multi Mode Vehicle - motorbike AND aircraft in one - Here we are in 2009 - televisions are thin, phones are smart and robots are on the rise, but still there's that nagging sense of disappointment each time you look outside and realize that cars don't fly. Samson Motorworks hopes to rescue us from this predicament. (GizMag June 3, 2009)
Directory:Flycycle - Canadian project objective is to build a practical human-powered aircraft. Their first prototype is nearing completion testing is pending. Presently a do-it-yourself project, complete with instructions.
HoverCopter - Vertical Lifting System (US Patent Pending) uses vertical airfoils to control the reverse torque created by spinning the horizontal rotor blades. Uses the down draft to achieve reverse torque and rotational control. Site mentions Perendev Magnetic Motor as ideal for the design.
AirScooter - Flying craft by inventor, Woody Norris, weighs 250-pounds, resembles a small helicopter, designed for medium distance air travel, but far easier to learn. Handlebar like a motorcycle. Can fly for 2 hours on one tank of fuel. (DiscoveryChannel.ca April 20, 2005)
Directory:Mimicking Living Organisms > Spiraling maple tree seeds inspire world's smallest single-winged rotocraft - Students at the University of Maryland have turned to nature to create a flying device -- possibly the world's smallest controllable single-winged rotocraft -- that can hover and perform surveillance duties, and that could lead to applications for military and emergency services. (GizMag October 21, 2009)
See Directory:Airships - separate page
Solar plane's 3-day flight - The solar-powered Zephyr aircraft developed by the UK defence and technology firm QinetiQ has completed the longest-lasting unmanned flight. Chris Kelleher, from UK defence and research firm QinetiQ, said Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) offer advantages over traditional aircraft and even satellites. Video (Slashdot) (BBC News'' Aug. 24, 2008)
Solar Aircraft Begins Virtual Flight Today – Check It Out Live - Solar Impulse hopes to send its HB-SIA prototype on its first test flight next year, and in preparation is conducting a virtual flight in its new cockpit simulator. The cool part is that they've wired the simulator up with webcams so people can watch the test live. (Thanks Directory:James Dunn)
Directory:Solar > Directory:Solar:Vehicles > Solar Flight - SUNSEEKER, a manned solar powered aircraft, has an electric motor, planetary gearbox, a folding propeller and 40 lbs of Lithium batteries installed in the wings. It was flown from Ramona to Tehachapi and back, over the Mojave Desert, San Gabriel mountains, Ontario, and Lake Elsinore. Flight time on the return was less than 3.5 hours.
Directory:Solar > Solar Plane to Fly Continuously Around Mars - Scientists believe that Sky-Sailor will reach the inner orbit of Mars within a decade or two. In 2005 a prototype achieved a continuous flight time of five hours, with a 24-hour flight test planned for the summer of 2007. With a lithium-ion polymer battery the plane can fly all night and during cloudy or foggy conditions, all on solar power. (PhysOrg Mar. 14, 2007)
Spark Design PALV - The PALV (Personal Air and Land Vehicle): a concept for a new form of transport, developed by Spark and BBB Management. The PALV can be driven like a car and flown like a gyrocopter. (http://www.gizmag.com/go/3323/GizMag Oct. 14, 2004))
AeroBiker - Allied AeroTechnics Inc. - Official site of the AirBike™ VTOL Personal Aircraft.
Inventor plans to unveil jetpack at air show - Glenn Martin, 48, who has spent 27 years developing the devices, said he hoped to begin selling them next year for $100,000 apiece. (International Herlald Tribune July 29, 2008)
Jetpack with 10-mile Range Available Soon -Jet Pack International is releasing a new model early next year that'll let potential pilots take to the skies for a generous 19 minutes. The purchase price of $226,000 comes with an included training course so you don't kill yourself. (Gizmodo Dec. 12, 2007)
Directory:Fuel Efficiency > 50 MPG Plane Wins PAV Prize - The Pipistrel won NASA's Personal Air Vehicle X-Prize like contest, achieving 50 MPG. The plane is extremely light weight, so it becomes more fuel efficient as it flies and burns fuel, getting lighter. The plane's simple controls and ease of operation also helped it take home the prize. It costs about $70,000. (EcoGeek Aug. 15, 2007)
Directory:Fuel Efficiency > Directory:Fuel Efficiency Vehicles > 9 Steps to Cheaper Greener Flight - The Boeing 787 Dreamliner is the first commercial jet produced with efficiency specifically in mind, but the 787 still leaves a lot of room for improvement. Several designs are at various stages of production that could make air travel as efficient, or even more efficient, than automobiles. (EcoGeek Jul. 26, 2007)
Directory:Fuel Efficiency > Directory:Fuel Efficiency Vehicles > Ohio Airships - The Dynalifter® “Roadless Trucking?? system has transport costs and speeds comparable to trucking without the need of building a sophisticated highway network. It has the ability to fly on low amounts of power at low speeds, much like airships, but without the operational drawbacks of a traditional airship.
Directory:Fuel Efficiency > Directory:Fuel Efficiency Vehicles > Silent aircraft creeps closer to reality - Researchers from Cambridge University and MIT unveiled their concept for a flying wing aircraft that makes a huge reduction in noise. This highly-efficient design offers improvements of around 25% in fuel consumption and is intended for entry into service in 2030. (The Cambridge-MIT Institute November 06, 2006)
35% More Efficient Flight - Bauhaus Luftfahrt is promising emissions cuts of 35% by 2035, to meet the European Union’s Clean Skies initiative. They propose adoption of geared turbofans in conventional engines for 15%, then counter fans for 5%, and waste recuperation for another 15% efficiency. Bauhaus is also working on a box-winged aircraft for further reductions. (EcoGeek Feb. 14, 2008)
See: Directory:Asteroid Capture - separate index page
Spaceport America breaks ground, flights departing soon - Virgin Galactic may be spending over USD$300 million on a commercial space vehicle, and now it will have a place to land by 2011. Spaceport America, the world’s first purpose-built commercial spaceport, broke ground in New Mexico on June 19th. The 110,000 square foot facility will cost around $200m. (GizMag June 25, 2009)
Reaction Engines Talk to the Space Fellowship - “Skylon is an unpiloted, reuseable spaceplane intended to provide inexpensive and reliable access to space. It operates like an aircraft and uses an airbreathing rocket engine called Sabre (Synergistic Air-Breathing Rocket Engine) from Reaction Engines Limited. The vehicle is currently undergoing a revision that will give it a 15 tonne payload to low earth orbit.” (Space Fellowship Jan. 7, 2009)
Successful test of superconducting plasma rocket engine - Ad Astra Rocket Company has successfully demonstrated operation of its VX-200 plasma engine first stage at full power and under superconducting conditions. VASIMRA engines could enable space operations far more efficiently than today's chemical rockets, and ultimately they could also greatly speed up robotic and human transit times for missions to Mars and beyond. (Space Fellowship July 6, 2009)
The new space race: first courier service to the moon - One of its most promising contenders in Google’s USD$30 million Lunar X Prize is Odyssey Moon, which has announced plans to become the first private company to supply payload delivery services to the Moon. (GizMag July 20, 2009)
Space Hotel 2012 - Start planning that vacation to outer space. The first space hotel is expected to open as soon as 2012, with three-day stay costing ~$4 million. The hotel, "Galactic Suites," will allow adventurous travelers to enjoy a spectacular starry view from their hotel rooms, see the Sun rise 15 times a day and take part in scientific experiments while they're not using Velcro suits to crawl around their pod-room walls. (Facebook)
What Is The Carbon Footprint of The Space Program? - While burning liquid hydrogen, which produces water vapour, is clean the process of creating the liquid hydrogen for one flight consumes about as much electricity as could power 128 average American homes for a year, not to mention the transportation costs for shipping that fuel to the launch site. (TreeHugger July 20, 2009)
Boeing tests battery-powered plane - "For the first time in the history of aviation, Boeing has flown a manned airplane that was powered by a hydrogen battery," Boeing chief technology officer John Tracy told a news conference at the firm's research centre in the central Spanish town of Ocana. (The Age April 4, 2008)
1.58 minutes Story of Boeing's Hydrogen Fuel Cell Aircraft
"We are proud of our pioneering work during the past five years on the Fuel Cell Demonstrator Airplane project. It is a tangible example of how we are exploring future leaps in environmental performance, as well as a credit to the talents and innovative spirit of our team."
(April 4, 2008 YouTube)
Directory:Waste to Energy / Directory:Alternative Fuels > Directory:Diesel > US Military Investigating Fuel from Waste - Two companies are working together on a portable system that converts coal, natural gas, and biomass into diesel and jet fuel. The military could use the system to convert waste created at military bases--food scraps, paper, wood--into a fuel for military jets and vehicles.
Directory:Fuel Efficiency Alternative Fuels > Directory:Butanol > Butanol Jet Fuel From CO2 - Ocean Ethanol lab experiments confirm electrochemical production of butanol from CO2, water and electricity, generating butanol, water and oxygen. Estimated production cost is $.80 per gallon - based on current electrical rates, free water and free CO2. Butanol was identified by Virgin Airlines as the jet fuel of the future. (Ocean Ethanol Feb. 21, 2007) (Thanks [mailto:email@example.com Greg Giese])
SpaceShipTwo heading for 2008 test flight - Designed as an environmentally benign space launch system, SpaceShipTwo is the world’s largest, all carbon composite aircraft and will be capable of carrying eight astronauts or other payloads into sub-orbital space flight. (GizMag August 4, 2008)
DLR and Airbus Testing Hydrogen PEM Fuel Cell Auxiliary Power System in A320 - The hydrogen fuel cell system worked consistently below 3G, with enough in store for a standby system. Since February 2008 the same fuel cell system has been used to power a hydraulic circuit pump, with the necessary power to steer the Airbus A320 ATRA (Advanced Technology Research Aircraft) . (GreenCar Congress May 26, 2008)