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Private A380

Jul 18, 2007

Aviation biofuel

As we know, research is conducted around the world to create biofuel for cars. Ethanol and sunflower oil are processed into fuel and are even already in use in cars around the world.
A rumor has spread out at the boeing 787 announcement that similar research is being conducted for jet fuel. Air New Zealand and Boeing are working together to create the ultimate aviation biofuel. The secret ingredient; wild algae. Tests are being conducted on passenger aircraft fuelling one engine with the new biofuel and the other with jet fuel.
Boeing states that with this new fuel it is possible to cut down the Co2 footprint to zero. Richard Bransons empire Virgin has also discussed the possibilty of using the fuel in its 747-400 aircrafts.
Is this the future of aviation? Is it safe to use in passenger aircrafts? Can we extract enough algae to meet the grade need?

Jul 17, 2007

Moonergy

Our increasing demand for energy is causing stream of new research toward a new and more effective source. Nuclear energy is a great source for large amounts energy but is becoming infamous among environmentalists due to its waste problem.

A new way of exploiting nuclear energy has been experimented on. Instead of splicing atoms, they can be fused with higher temperatures. The temeperature required to set the reaction is equal to the core of the sun (tens of millions of degrees C). Nuclear fusion is much more efficient creating more power with a much smaller amount of input. The problem lies in controlling the large amounts of energy (neutrons) that escape. To this time, scientists have been able to create enough energy to light up a whole town but only for about 4 seconds due to the large amounts of neutrons constantly bombarding the reaction chamber. To tame this energy scientists have researched a new substance, Helium 3.
Helium3 is a gas scarce on earth, it is produced on the sun and burst into space. Earths atmosphere deflects most of the gas but the moon (as it has no atmosphere) collects the gas on its surface, and builds up over a period of millions of years. This helium3 rich moon dust is estimated to be more valuable than the biggest diamonds found on earth as a small pebble the size of a pea could be worth 5 million dollars.

Private companies in Russia and China as well as Nasa are now investing heavily on getting man to the moon again. The costs of these new projects are high but this just may solve the problems of increasing energy demand, global warming and high levels of waste. Problems that haunt our very existence.

Is exploiting the moon to meet our energy needs the right thing to do? Should we colonize the moon? What will happen when the worlds super powers all go for the same resource? should billions of tax payers dollars be spent on getting man back on the moon?

Jul 16, 2007

Low fare, don`t care


Ive noticed that when airline ticket prices go down the quality of passenger also falls. When I worked as a air host for a european low fares airline I experienced the everyday threats of poor behaviour in the aircraft. On a flight from a baltic country early at six in the morning the crew experienced a fright when a drunk passanger threatened the pursor to provide him with more alcoholic beverages. When the pursor had decided that the person had had enough to drink already he became ever more aggressive holding the cabin crew member by the neck. The pursor then immediately contacted the pilots and the flight was diverted to the nearest airport and the aggressor was then arrested by local police.
This is one in many experiences cabin crew have to go through everyday. Should cabin crew training include self defence? How can the airlines prevent these from happening, should all passengers be checked for criminal records?

Jul 13, 2007

Battle of the skies

On the 8.07 of this year the new boeing manufactured 787 dreamliner was announced, bringing in the direct competitor of the airbus A380. The competition between Europe and the USA is huge in the airline market. In this case Airbus´ new star the A380 and Boeings passenger friendly 787 series face each other as airlines place orders for the two types. Both types have very different strategies to compete in the fiercely growing aviation industry. Airbus´ plan is to dominate the market with the concept of higher passenger loads by building the worlds largest passenger aircraft (not the largest aircraft if we count the Antonov cargo A-225) shifting larger amounts of passengers at a time. The Boeing 787, on the other hand, is built for comfort and efficiency aiming at the cutting of fuel costs. Which one will dominate the market? What is it the airlines are looking for? How about passengers like you and me?

Dreamliner

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