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4 Paws Aviation's oxygen hood for dogs means you can take to the skies with your canine co...

We know our canine companions like to walk and run and go for a ride in the car but how many of us would consider taking to the skies with our dog? If you’re a dog owner who likes to get airborne with your furry friend you might find that the Supplemental Oxygen Supply Hood is a handy piece of equipment to have on board. It’s an air system for dogs traveling at altitudes of 8,000 feet and above, and it’s currently on display at Oshkosh 2010.  Read More

Terrafugia has released specifications and computer graphics of its next generation flying...

Terrafugia has released specifications and computer graphics of its next generation flying-car design. The company made use of the world's biggest aviation industry platform – AirVenture 2010 – to detail the future shape of its Transition Roadable Aircraft which sports automotive-style crash safety features, a touch-screen interface, improved wing design and a folding mechanism that can be activated from inside the vehicle... plus sleeker lines than the proof of concept vehicle we've seen previously.  Read More

ICON Aircraft's A5 amphibious, two-seat, composite carbon fiber plane at Oshkosh/EAA Airve...

Light Sport Aircraft (LSA) manufacturer, ICON Aircraft, has announced two major design enhancements aimed at to simplifying aircraft complexity and increase safety in its A5 amphibious, two-seat, composite carbon fiber plane. The first improvement for the plane,which is edging closer to production, is the elimination of wing flaps, which will simplify pilot operations, while the second is a spin-resistant design that will include, amongst other things, the addition of wing cuffs to lower the stall speed of the aircraft.  Read More

Solar Impulse completes all night flight milestone Solar Impulse HB-SIA (Image: Solar Impu...

A plane powered entirely by the sun that flies at night. It sounds improbable, but Solar Impulse has just proven that it can be done. Following on from its maiden flight in April, the solar plane flew through the night in the skies above Switzerland this week, passing another important milestone on a journey that has already lasted seven years and is set to culminate in an attempt to fly around the world non-stop in 2012.  Read More

The AEROCORK cork composite material (Photo: Paul Ridden)

Many of the exhibitors we encountered at the Paris Green Air Show were showing off aircraft that ran on electricity, alternative fuels, or that reduced the consumption of fossil fuels. One booth, however, was displaying a different sort of green aviation product – a low-impact, natural cork composite called AEROCORK, intended to replace PVC foam and other petroleum-based building materials in aircraft. It is the result of a collaboration between three Portuguese tech companies.  Read More

The Sunseeker uses an alternative energy source

A new annual competition in Vichy, France will take place for the first time this July in order to develop and bring attention to sustainable energy-economy in the motorized ultralight aircraft (ULM) industry. Calling to mind the wacky inventiveness of the Red Bull Flugtag, the Eco Marathon ULM aims not to achieve furthest flight through human power, but by the least possible fuel, and the competitors will undoubtedly hope to amaze more than amuse.  Read More

The Terrafugia Transition in the air

Is this the first viable flying car? It's a question we posed back in 2006 when we first looked at the prototype Terrafugia Transition. It now looks like the answer is yes. The flying car (or “roadable aircraft,” as the Massachusetts-based company prefers), can fly like a regular plane and land at an airport before folding up its wings and hitting the road. In car mode, it can travel at highway speeds and park in regular parking spots. Terrafugia had been hoping the Transition could be classified as a light sport aircraft, as a sport pilot’s license is considerably easier to get than a regular private pilot’s license. Unfortunately, it was proving impossible to meet all the road safety requirements, while still keeping the vehicle weight under the 1,320-pound limit for a light sport aircraft. Well, it has just been announced that the US Federal Aviation Authority will make an exception for the Transition, and allow it to squeak in at 1,430 pounds. Things are looking up for this little aeromobile.  Read More

Minix wing tip device promises 6% gain in fuel efficiency for airliners

Fuel consumption and greenhouse gas emissions are huge priorities in the aviation industry – passenger airliners chew through amazing quantities of fuel. Take the Boeing 747, which guzzles somewhere around a gallon of jet fuel per second – it's clear that a percentile improvement in fuel consumption can make a huge difference to costs at the end of a long-haul flight. That's why the Minix wing tip deserves close scrutiny. It replaces the tilted winglets at the tip of an aircraft wing, can be retrofitted to any airplane, and smooths out the wing-tip vortex, reducing the aircraft's wing drag. Minix claims the design is five times more effective than a regular winglet and can save as much as 6% on an aircraft's energy costs. For a commercial Boeing 747, that equates to a saving of around 600,000 gallons of fuel per year, per aircraft. Food for thought.  Read More

The D double bubble aircraft design promises a 70 percent improvement in fuel economy (Ima...

The contribution of aircraft to greenhouse gas emissions has been well documented and while biofuels are being trialled in an effort to combat the issue, an expected doubling in air traffic by 2035 suggests that a fundamental shift in technology is needed to make real progress. That's the starting point for the D “double bubble” – a design concept presented to NASA by an MIT led research team which promises a 70 percent improvement in fuel economy, reduced noise, lower nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions and the ability to use shorter runways.  Read More

The Mercedes-Benz Style EC145 Luxury Helicopter

It's not surprising that Mercedes Benz should begin developing luxury helicopters and luxury yachts. The original meaning of the trademarked Mercedes three pointed star signified mobility on land, on water and in the air, so it is possible that the portfolio will include boats, aircraft, helicopters and other transport products. Unveiled in Geneva this week, the new Mercedes Benz Style EC145 Luxury Helicopter is actually a twin-engine turbine Eurocopter EC145 model with an extensive interior redesign using Mercedes' knowledge of luxury materials, lighting and re-purposing flexibility to offer both luxury ambiance and German practicality. It's all the work of the newly created Mercedes-Benz Advanced Design Studio in Como, Italy. Oh, and they're also working on a prototype yacht.  Read More

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