On December 21, 1988, a terrorist bomb detonated in the luggage hold of Pan Am flight 103 causing the 747 airliner to break up over Lockerbie, Scotland, and killing 243 passengers, 16 crew, and 11 people on the ground. To help prevent such a tragedy from occurring again, a European consortium, including the University of Sheffield, is developing Fly-Bag; a flexible fabric and composite liner capable of containing explosions inside an aircraft to improve its chances of survival.
Space on economy class flights is notoriously limited, especially with the tray table down. Craig Rabin has created a device that means your tray table can remain stowed for the most part. The Airhook attaches to the stowed table to hold an electronic device, a drink and a coat.
Flying-car developer Terrafugia has released new designs for its planned TF-X
model. The TF-X is a planned autonomous flying car that was announced back in 2013. The new design shows a sleeker body shape, a one-tenth scale model of which will be tested in a wind tunnel at MIT.
The Solar Impulse team has announced that the completion of its
round-the-world solar flight will now be postponed until next April. The
batteries of the Solar Impulse 2 solar-powered aircraft sustained
damage as the aircraft ascended to an optimal energy-management
altitude of 28,000 ft (8,534 m) on the first day of its
ambitious Japan-to-Hawaii flight. It
is believed that a high rate of climb coupled with over-insulation of
the gondolas resulted in irreversible overheating damage to the aircraft's
It's been quite a month for electric aircraft. First, the Solar Impulse 2 broke distance and duration records when it flew from Japan to Hawaii. Then, two competing teams both claimed to have made the world's first electric flight across the English Channel.
Now, Germany's PC-Aero says that its Elektra One Solar has become the
first solar-electric plane to cross the Alps in both directions.
Newly-designed aircraft cabins for Swiss International Airlines are
aimed at making long-haul flights more comfortable for holidaymakers and
more productive for business travelers. Designed by PriestmanGoode, the
cabins will provide passengers with more space, storage and privacy.
An electric aircraft has crossed the English Channel for the first time. The question is, which one is it? On Friday, Airbus Group announced that its E-Fan technology demonstrator claimed the prize by flying from Lydd, Kent to Calais. However, it soon came to light that French Aerobat Hugues Duval had flown from Dover to Calais 12 hours earlier on Thursday in a Cri-Cri electric plane. Exactly which one gets in the record books may hinge on a technicality.
One of only two Mk.1 Spitfires still able to fly today has sold for a record amount at Christie's auctions. The gavel fell at £3,106,500 (US$4,784,010) on the painstakingly restored RAF Spitfire P9374, far exceeding pre-auction estimates of £2.5m.