National Aeronautics and Space Administration is helping to kick
off the Green
Aviation Summit at NASA's Ames Research Center in Moffet
Field, California. The summit is hosting 200 participants in
the government, industry, and academia and looks to highlight
progress towards solutions to the industry's toughest problems --
fuel efficiency (which directly impacts airlines' profitability),
carbon emissions, air traffic noise, and space.One of the
solutions proposed to improve fuel efficiency is to investigate
unconventional aircraft designs. Other options include
use of biofuels, designing more efficient engines, or using new
lightweight, high-strength materials.Ames Research Center
Director Simon "Pete" Worden speaking to the audience at
the summit stated, "As the world travels even more we're going
to have a very serious global warming issue, as well as lots of other
environmental impacts of aviation."NASA has proposed
that by 2015 aircraft be developed that use 33 percent less fuel than
the current most energy efficient models, by 2020 use 50 percent less
fuel, and by 2025 use over 50 percent less fuel. NASA also
wants toxic nitric oxide and nitrogen oxide emissions cut 20 percent
by 2015, 50 percent by 2020, and better than 50 percent by 2025.Not
all the goals are "green", so to speak, though. NASA
also wants to cut aviation noise levels to one sixth of their current
level by 2020. Noise pollution is a major concern for citizens
living near U.S. airports.Talk of global warming,
particularly in light of recent revised
melting figures, is sure to provoke criticism from some and
praise from others. However, most would agree that cutting NOX
emissions -- which are toxic and cause health issues -- is
desirable. Likewise, most can agree that cutting noise
pollution is a good idea.Additionally, fuel efficiency gains
potentially can be a smart business plan, given the massive yearly
fuel costs of the airline industry.Of course, the goals of
the summit are overly ambitious and achieving them in an economical
manner will be a serious challenge. Still it's good to see some
of the brightest minds in the industry striving to reinvent and
improve one of man's most impressive engineering marvels – the
quote: NASA has proposed that by 2015 aircraft be developed that use 33 percent less fuel
quote: I doubt that Boeing put everything they could into making it as fuel efficient as possible
quote: Supposedly, even something as simple as painting the leading edges of an aircraft with a radioactive paint can improve fuel efficiency by 2-5% (it sets up a very thin layer of plasma on the surface of the wing which reduces drag).
quote: I doubt that Boeing put everything they could into making it as fuel efficient as possible, they were already taking huge risks just the way the plane is now (just look at all their slippage if you don't believe there was risk).
quote: The electric turbines will recharge when the pilot hits the air brakes ;-)
quote: -- Enabling aircraft to burn 33 percent less fuel than today's most efficient models by 2015, 50 percent less by 2020, and better than 50 percent less by 2025.
quote: how.. cute. in less then 4 years design a brand new aircraft better then the stuff just coming into production today?
quote: The NASA guys are not stupid stop making them out to be!
quote: NASA has proposed that by 2015 aircraft be developed that use 33 percent less fuel than the current most energy efficient models, by 2020 use 50 percent less fuel, and by 2025 use over 50 percent less fuel.
quote: How is it that you know how much flying is appropriate?
quote: I was referring more to the concept of "stay the hell home". Simple concept: travel less miles; emit less pollution I'm not saying much more than that.
quote: Aircraft entering today's fleet are 70 percent more fuel efficient than early commercial jet airplanes, consuming about 3.5 liters per passenger per 100 km. Technological innovation is a fundamental part of this industry.
quote: Don't encourage people to fly.
quote: A typical 737-700 can hold 130-150 passengers? Take all of them and put them on a plane from San Francisco to San Diego or have them in ones and twos drive there in roughly 90 cars of various types and fuel efficiencies. Which way do you think pollutes more?
quote: But if people couldn't afford to fly, don't you think they would start carpooling? I do.