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Author Topic: How the "World's Favourite Airline" has fallen  (Read 829 times)
southwest
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« Reply #15 on: October 17, 2020, 04:34:39 pm »

I do not believe that electric aircraft will EVER be possible for long distances such as trans Atlantic.
Flying needs a lot of energy, and even the best batteries have an energy density very much lower than oil derived fuels.

Electric aircraft are a distinct possibility for "short hops" such as to islands not far from the mainland. At least one has already flown. The consequences of mechanical failure could be fatal, but no more of a risk than for fossil fuel aircraft.
A large battery powered airliner able to cross the Channel with dozens or hundreds of passengers should be possible, but is there any point ? Rail is probably preferable.

Battery/solar powered airships are a possibility, but are much slower than jet aircraft. I do not expect large scale use of airships because the helium with which they are filled is in limited supply.

Airships have a history of exploding which is why they are no longer commonplace.  Battery aircraft are possible, it depends on if they weight and size can be brought to a useful size, a turbofan style engine driven by electric motor is certainly possible, but the technology would have to be proven.
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broadgage
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« Reply #16 on: October 17, 2020, 06:19:40 pm »

Helium filled airships would be safe from explosion, but seem unlikely to see large scale use due to limitations on helium supply. Hydrogen is too flammable for manned craft, as the Hindenburg accident showed.
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
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