Dutch national carrier KLM Royal Dutch Airlines has teamed up with TU Delft to fund a futuristic V-shaped, fuel-efficient airplane design known as the Flying-V. It’s aimed to improve the sustainability of air travel by incorporating the passenger cabin, fuel tanks and cargo hold into the wings. The aircraft is claimed to use 20% less fuel than the Airbus A350-900 while carrying a similar number of passengers — the Flying-V seats 314, while the Airbus A350 seats between 300-350. Read more for a video and additional information.
“Aviation is contributing about 2.5% of global CO2 emissions, and the industry is still growing, so we really need to look at more sustainable airplanes. We cannot simply electrify the whole fleet, as electrified airplanes become way too heavy and you can’t fly people across the Atlantic on electric airplanes — not now, not in 30 years. So we have to come up with new technologies that reduce fuel burn in a different way. The new configuration that we propose realizes some synergy between the fuselage and the wing. The fuselage actively contributes to the lift of the airplane, and creates less aerodynamic drag,” said TU Delft project leader Roelof Vos to CNN.