Images of a short-range electric flight for the cost of a Netflix subscription and it’s closer than you think

There are dynamics that have prevented the massive use of highly regional flights for decades. American Airlines has just announced that it will join United Air and others in flying luxury passengers from Philadelphia to places like Atlantic City and Lancaster PA. There are many reasons for the lack of quality regional air transportation hubs, imagine noisy planes trying to land in a wealthy area in Sonoma or The Hamptons.

It is unlikely that local residents will want it or that most normal people will be able to afford the current methods for local flights to small or regional airports. If you had a near-silent (silent Tesla) model based on environmentally positive fuel types (electric, for example), a different OPEX cost envelope that radically reduced overall costs, and a new design, you could change the nature of flight. Imagine opening the skies for $30 flights to and from all 5,700 regional airports in the US instead of having to drive five hours to get somewhere. This type of certified solution will open up entirely new global markets as part of our new daily lives: a true Greyhound bus to the skies. The company, Faradair, is based in Droxford, UK, in the air hangar that housed the first Spitfire squadron in World War II and was where Frank Whittle, the inventor of the jet engine, learned to fly and worked from 1929 .

Neil Cloughley is the CEO of Faradair aerospace his ideas on opening up airspace to the idea of ​​the greyhound in the sky which is silent, much lower cost operationally and with green promise. This is a whole new way of moving people and things that will use a lot of existing technology without having to reinvent much.

Here are six ideas from the podcast.

· Going from a duel to a single power system that doesn’t need $10 million in lifetime engine repair costs (per 30,000 flight hours) could change the economics of regional flights.

· Imagine being able to reserve a seat on a local plane on your cell phone to fly 200 miles and be out of your home and arrival airport in less than two hours for just the cost of a monthly Netflix subscription.

· The engineered solution Faradair recommends is an evolving architecture that progressively takes advantage of changes in automotive software and certified aviation capabilities. This makes the next steps practical and not just aspirational. Some of these ideas date back thirty years (trialas, MQ1 Predator).

· Currently, only 10% of the 5,700 US regional airfields have commercial businesses representing approximately $134 billion in economic activity. With a low cost cargo and human aerial system in place that could multiply tenfold very quickly to over $1tr.

· New simulation capabilities and digital twins mean that these new design dynamics (trial, low-level, electrical) can be tested and modeled much faster than traditional wind tunnel approaches.

· This kind of low-cost, environmentally clean approach that should be easy and local could, for the first time, put pressure on the auto industry.

As video conferencing became the norm for communications in Covid, low-cost, green driving systems for aircraft that could enable regional travel could have the same disruptive effect on transportation. Doing this through a set of logical, connected waypoints — electrical power systems, low-level flights below 10,000 feet, and targeting regional airports — could make this the next Zoom.

Faradair is developing a hybrid-electric aircraft concept that solves three core problems hindering the growth of regional flights: noise, operating costs and emissions With a clean sheet design aircraft configured specifically for hybrid-electric flights, BEHA has as goal to achieve significant reductions in these areas while offering an economically viable regional air transport solution.

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