I remember begin a kid and driving by the Good Year Blimp hangar in Conroe Texas, on our way to Houston. Sometime we would stop if it was taking off or landing to watch its graceful movements. But I have not seen a Blimp or Airship for many years now, yet they may return to service before long. There have been many changes in materials, technology and the transportation industry that may make Hybrid Airship usage viable again.
New Airships use hovercraft technology to raise and lower themselves somewhat like a helicopter. The shape is more wing-like and aerodynamic then the older models such as the famous Hindenburg. The skin of the new Airships will be made of tough new fabric that can last up to 15 years and the hull is pressure stabilized so if you poked it with a sharp object all
the helium inside would not rush out.
Since Airships do not need a long runway, Airship Ports can be set up adjacent to a large parking lot. Can you imagine a portion of the Wal-Mart parking lot being cordoned off for an Airship landing and takeoff? Think how this would open up additional markets. Instead of going to the traditional airport, you can go to a regional Airship Port to catch your next flight. This could help elevate some of the crowding at traditional airports.
Although the weight capacity is similar to airplanes, the fuel consumption of an Airship is much less. Think about it, once an Airship is airborne, it takes little fuel to push it along. But this does bring up the issue of speed. The average Airship would have a top end speed of 120 mph making a trip from LA to New York take about 20 hours. So, maybe it’s better for
shorter hops or for non-rush cargo.
If you have time and would like a unique way to travel then keep your eye open for ads in the future. As for now, I was unable to find a source selling tickets on any type of airship. Yet we both know, if you have the money …
I look forward to reading your thoughts and comments on the future of Airships.
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