Ever seen a watch that’s fascinating yet unsettling at the same time?
The Red Radar Ceramic from Bell & Ross looks absolutely stunning with its aircraft control radar-inspired dial. Designed in a sinister black-and-red color-way, the watch features a dial with multiple concentric circles and a sweeping seconds hand to make it look like the radar’s in the process of scanning. To tell the time, the dial comes with two airplanes that indicate the hours and minutes respectively as they rotate around in circles. It’s a treat to watch time go by, and I’m sure the next time you’re passing through an airport, the TSA’s going to really think you’re a cool cat!
As its name suggests, the Red Radar Ceramic comes with a 42mm wide ceramic body. The watch itself runs on Bell & Ross’ own BR-CAL.302 automatic movement, and is housed in a casing that’s water-resistant up to 100 meters. To top things off, the watch obviously comes with a sapphire crystal glass on top, but for added appeal, the glass is tinted red too, giving the watch its crimson radar-inspired design.
The watch is a part of a limited release, with just 999 units up for sale. If you fancy yourself a slick Bond villain-type and you’ve got $4,300 to spare, you could probably get your hands on a piece.
Ensuring that an aircraft maintains a lightweight body and structure is critical for a few reasons. The lighter the aircraft, the less expensive it is to fly. As additional weight is added to any aircraft, more fuel is needed to fly, which in turn means that more CO2 gas emissions are released during flight. Keep that in mind the next time you’re transferring piles of underwear from your suitcase to your carry-on in the middle of the airport lobby. In order to provide the lightest business class seat possible, JPA Design teamed up with Williams Advanced Engineering and SWS Aircraft Certification to create AIRTEK.
JPA Design’s aim is simple: to produce an all-composite seat structure to help airlines save fuel and CO2. In doing so, the brains and operation behind AIRTEK have produced an ultralight seat that’s durable and thick, constructed from recycled materials to reduce its carbon footprint without compromising comfort or storage. In order to achieve all of this while maintaining AIRTEK’s lightweight quality, JPA Design designed the seat to be self-supporting so that its loads are supported by the skin and shell of the seat.
Since the seat is largely self-supported, fewer internal structures are required for construction, lending to a more lightweight, yet plush aircraft seat. In addition to a lighter weight, fewer internal structures result in more room for customer perks like more legroom and extra storage space. AIRTEK’s lightweight form and structure not only provides customers with aircraft benefits for long flights and extra carry-on bags but also allows airlines to carry passengers to and from destinations and burn less fuel in the process.
In designing AIRTEK, JPA Design managed to create a patented unibody, composite, monocoque aircraft structure entirely built from recycled materials. From its conceptualization to its construction, the makers behind AIRTEK remained devoted to their initial aim. Setting out to help save fuel and CO2, JPA Design sculpted an ultralight business class seat, with credit to a skillful combination of technical engineering and artful craftsmanship.
Science fiction would have you believe it’s pretty easy to have an aircraft that takes off vertically like a helicopter, and then suddenly sprouts wings and thrusters which let it fly like a jet. It’s an incredibly tricky maneuver that’s fuel-intensive, and it becomes doubly complicated when you’re trying to make the entire aircraft an electric machine. However, Canada’s Horizon Aircraft has a pretty interesting aircraft with a hybrid power system and a patent-pending wing design.
Just on face value, the Horizon Cavorite X5 looks like an absolute sci-fi wet-dream. It sports the aesthetic of a sleek stealth-bomber, and comes with wings that, get this, split open to reveal multiple fans underneath (yes, wings with FANS!) These fans help the EVTOL take off and land vertically (like a helicopter) on a landing pad, and the outer covers close shut to turn the X5 into a wing-based aircraft that can hit speeds of up to 350 km/h (217mph).
The Cavorite X5 comes named after a fictional super-material first mentioned in H.G> Wells’ 1901 book The First Men in the Moon, which, when cooled, can cancel out the effects of gravity. The plane takes on those very characteristics too, with its unique ability to hover vertically before flying like a normal plane. With an LS V8 engine onboard and a relatively modest battery system, the Cavorite X5 can achieve cruise speeds of up to 350 km/h, traveling as far as 500 kilometers while carrying cargo. The EVTOL has seating for 5 people and enough space for cargo to match. Without passengers or cargo, the Cavorite X5’s range gets bumped up to a much more impressive 1000 kilometers or 625 miles.
The company behind the aircraft, Horizon, is currently working on a 1:6 scale version to begin testing its systems and software, and plans to have a half-scale machine built by the end of the year, with production beginning as early as 2024.
This is the Mad Fly Sports Raptor Football, a toy football/plane hybrid that can be thrown over 100 yards. So maybe for once when my brother tells me to go long, he’ll actually mean it. The toy does require a unique throw (read: not a football spiral) for the creation of maximum lift and distance though, so there is a learning curve involved.
The $50 toy, available on Amazon (affiliate link), is advertised as the world’s farthest-flying football, with ‘football’ clearly being defined very loosely here, because that is much less a ball and way more a plane. But did that stop me from starting an online petition demanding the NFL make it their new official ball? It did not.
Obviously, the ball still requires a decent arm to be able to throw it over 100 yards. With my sad arm, you’d probably have a hard time distinguishing if a throw was actually a throw or just an accidental drop. Hey, it’s not my fault Santa never brought me a Bowflex. Granted I’ve never asked for one either, but still.
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Airbus is targeting to bring zero-carbon passenger plane to the masses by 2035, keeping in line with its vision for emission-free flights in the future. The ultimate goal is to pave way for the “decarbonization of the entire aviation industry.” To this end, the aerospace giant has revealed three concept airplanes that will harness the power of hydrogen to give their future-forward vision, WINGS! Choosing hydrogen fuel for these concepts makes complete sense – after all, it is clean aviation fuel and is one of the solutions for the aerospace and other industries to reach their climate-neutral milestones.
As Guillaume Faury, Airbus CEO said, “I strongly believe that the use of hydrogen – both in synthetic fuels and as a primary power source for commercial aircraft – has the potential to significantly reduce aviation’s climate impact.” Guillaume added that this venture requires able support from the government and industry partners. It will require increased funding for research & technology and digitalization. He also emphasized on the fact that airports will have to be ready for the hydrogen transport and refueling infrastructure to make it feasible in day-to-day operations.
The trio of concept aircraft, for now, is christened “ZEROe” – each one having a unique configuration depending on the requirement of the commercial aviation operation.
Airbus ZEROe Turboprop
Fit for short interstate trips, the ZEROe Turboprop aircraft uses a turboprop engine which is again powered the liquid hydrogen fuel. By the way, it can carry up to 100 passengers on-board. The plane goes more than 1,000 nautical miles on a full tank, making it perfect to be a private airliner for the filthy rich.
Airbus ZEROe Turbofan
The ZEROe Turbofan is more of a conventional airplane configuration that accommodates 120-200 passengers. Totally capable of conducting transcontinental flights (more than 2,000 nautical miles), the ZEROe Turbofan is propelled by a modified gas-turbine engine, powered by liquid hydrogen fuel. The fuel is stored and supplied to the airplane engine via the storage tanks on the back of the rear pressure bulkhead. The passengers are seated in the other three-fourth of the plane along with the crew.
Airbus ZEROe Blended-wing body
The ZEROe Blended-wing body is the most eye-catching of them all – looking to be inspired by the Stealth bomber plane. It has a wide configuration as compared to the other two which have a very sleek, lengthy structure. The wings are a part of the airplane body – that’s why the name “blended-wing body”. It can haul up to 200 passengers in one go and has a range of 2,000 nautical miles, similar to its sibling, the turbofan concept. This design has a very wide fuselage, thereby, giving flexibility for multiple configurations when it comes to the cabin layout and the hydrogen fuel storage option.
None compares to Teague when we talk about designing interiors of Boeing commercial airliners. So, how could they resist the temptation to craft the interiors of a Boeing 787 Dreamliner tailor-made for pro athletes? The Seattle-based cross-discipline design firm collaborated with Nike to come up with the Athlete’s Plane that keeps athletes in top playing condition, even when they traverse three timezones to play a crucial away game. Specifically designed for a basketball team, the airborne facility has everything a player needs to be 100 percent mentally and physically fit to negate the “away disadvantage.” To extract the best performance out of players, when it matters, the quality of travel is important – for the team staff as well. To this end, Teague closely interviewed professional players, coaches, and operational staff to conceptualize this athlete-centric Boeing 787 Dreamliner’s interior.
Once the problem was identified, Teague worked with expert designers and trainers from Nike to design particular zones with the intended purpose. They are segregated into – recovery areas for rejuvenation, workout decks for muscle toning, sleep, and review zones for analyzing past game data. The recovery areas are dedicated to accelerating body repair and there are in-flight biometric monitoring urinals too. Players also benefit from the compression sleeves embedded on the aircraft’s sidewall. Interestingly, the embedded sensors on the athletes’ garments keep track of the health statistics and send alerts to the accompanying staff if something needs to be tended to.
Keeping in mind the height of basketball players, the lie-flat seats are ideal for relaxed body posture. The ambiance of this area is tuned for relaxation to give the individuals their own personal space. Here players can also review game clips thanks to the OLED screens and large touchscreen monitors. Sleep is vital to keep the body and mind in perfect condition for any activity. On-board this airliner, the players benefit from an interior aptly created to promote healthy sleep, even during long flights. For players who have had enough sleep for the flight, moving down to the lower deck for socializing and having a coffee could be an option. In this section, the players will find café tables and benches that convert into beds for a quick nap.
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Unless you happen to be in a seaplane, if your airplane lands in the water, you’re probably in big trouble. The only other exception is if your airplane is actually an inflatable pool float, like this air-filled jumbo jet.
Unlike the floatation devices you find under your seat on an airplane, M Mark’s airplane float is big enough to hold up to seven people. That’s a far cry from the hundreds most jumbo jets can carry, but it’s way more than the average pool float too. Now you just need to find a swimming pool that’s big enough for this thing to land in. Perhaps a lake would be a better idea.
The floating airplane is made from heavy-gauge PVC, and should prove pretty seaworthy as long as you don’t carry any toothpicks, thumbtacks, or skewers in your swimsuit. While its $233 price tag might seem steep for a pool float, it’s way less than a round trip ticket from Chicago to the Bahamas these days.
Seats on a business class ticket are dramatically safer than those in economy class. That isn’t because they were designed to be safer, it’s because they were designed around the idea of spacious luxury. James Lee’s butterfly seats explore that very idea to make flight seats safer. By isolating seats, creating partitions, and providing facilities that align with the concept of premium value addition, the Butterfly seats instantly offer a much more safe travel experience by creating dedicated spaces for passengers with lesser chances of spreading germs through interaction.
The seats come in pairs of two and are slightly offset, rather than being side by side. This immediately means you don’t have someone directly beside you, which decreases the chances of socialization. Seats even have adjustable partitions between them to separate passengers, and even have dedicated armrests so you’re never accidentally resting your arm on someone else’s place. Seats come with all the fittings needed to allow you to store your belongings and even work while flying. A dedicated laptop desk ensures you can work while flying, and there are even slots to store magazines and your own pair of in-flight headphones. For parents traveling with little children, the seats fold down to turn into a makeshift bed for youngsters, and if you’re traveling solo with nobody beside you, both the seats can be folded down and covered with a zigzag mattress so you can sleep comfortably – a feature that’s useful for people who are unwell on the journey or for red-eye flights.
It’s simple tactics like this that will help make flying safer and less fearful at the same time. With solutions like the Janus Seat, you end up creating a functioning solution, but run the risk of still dealing with an entrenched sense of fear in the passengers (besides, sitting in that middle seat becomes even less desirable). The Butterfly, however, retains the status quo, with seats that aren’t dramatically different and visors/partitions that don’t look like partitions. By masking the idea of safety using luxury as a design solution, the Butterfly makes traveling safe again while also allowing the experience to be a relaxing, valuable, and comfortable one!
The Butterfly Aircraft Seat is a winner of the A’ Design Award for the year 2020.