aircraft

Flying car maker AeroMobil: flying cars to take off 2017

Flying car maker AeroMobil: flying cars to take off 2017

While some car companies are still scrambling to develop self-driving cars or at least integrate smartphones into the dashboard, some are already look far ahead into the future and into the skies. But for AeroMobil, who has been working on flying cars since 1989, it might not actually be too far into the future at all. It believes that by 2017, the first commercial flying car will be available to the highest bidder. But considering its business revolves around flying cards, it's not hard to see why AeroMobil would be so optimistic.

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Wind-powered drone can fly for hours at a time

Wind-powered drone can fly for hours at a time

The average consumer drones that are becoming more and more popular these days run on batteries, which means at best they can stay in the air between 20 and 30 minutes at a time. But XAir Unmanned Aerial Systems, a California startup, has begun work on a drone model that is powered by the wind, with a prototype that was able to fly for more than two hours continuously. While the lift come from the wind, the 24-ounce fixed-wing design aircraft also features a small solar panel that is used to power electronics and recharge the internal battery.

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Ryanair, Vodafone partner for paperless cockpits, in-flight POS

Ryanair, Vodafone partner for paperless cockpits, in-flight POS

Ryanair has a no-frills approach to air travel. Founded in 1985, Ryanair’s concept is getting you from point A to point B, quickly and efficiently. Part of their strategy involves a digital footprint that they rely heavily on, with travelers often needing to check-in online before heading to the airport. In a deal with Vodafone, their digital identity is growing, with in-flight digital point-of-sale terminals and a paperless cockpit. It’ll be iPads galore in the air for Ryanair.

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Gogo gets FCC nod for 70Mbps in-flight WiFi tech

Gogo gets FCC nod for 70Mbps in-flight WiFi tech

Gogo, who provide in-flight WiFi options for many flights, have announced something exciting for the future of connectivity. The FCC has given Gogo the green light to start operating using their next-generation technology, dubbed 2Ku. According to Gogo, 2Ku will bring peak speeds of 70Mbps to you in-flight via a new spectrally efficient antenna. Gogo also says it costs less that competitor’s solutions, and is only 4.5-inches tall. The company even says future satellite technology could push 2Ku even further.

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Qatar Airlines plans real-time blackbox streaming

Qatar Airlines plans real-time blackbox streaming

As we’ve seen with two airplane disappearances over the past year, the black box on an airplane might record data, but flight data isn’t necessarily streamed. Qatar Airways wants to change that, and is announcing plans to stream flight info in real-time to sources on the ground. The streaming wouldn’t prevent a plane’s issues, but could allow help to arrive faster, possibly saving lives in the process. The news came as the airline unveiled their new Airbus A350 XWB.

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London airspace closed due to computer glitch

London airspace closed due to computer glitch

In London, a “computer failure” has shut down the airspace surrounding the city. The European Organisation for the Safety of Air Navigation says Swanwich air traffic control center is experiencing severe technical problems, and a fix is nowhere in sight. For now, the technical issue is causing severe delays, and they advise anyone departing via a London Airport — yes, even Heathrow — to double-check with their airline to make sure they’ll be able to leave on-time. There is no timeframe for a solution to this issue.

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United doling out 23,000 iPhone 6 Plus’ to flight crew

United doling out 23,000 iPhone 6 Plus’ to flight crew

Next time you fly United Airlines, your flight attendant might break out an iPhone. Don’t worry, though, they’re not bored with you. They’re not texting while you talk or anything. In fact, it might be to your benefit! In an ongoing effort to go paperless, United Airlines will be giving all flight attendants an iPhone 6 Plus, which will give them “important safety and service” info in their hand, all the time. The iPhones will start landing in-hand during the second quarter of 2015.

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AirStrato “civilian” UAV goes into preorder

AirStrato “civilian” UAV goes into preorder

Whenever UAVs or unmanned aerial vehicles are mentioned, two types almost always come to mind: the super powerful ones developed by the military or by corporations, and personal drones mostly used for fun, like taking sports action shots. These two groups also represent the two extremes of the pricing range, the most expensive and the most affordable ones, respectively. AirStrato is an air robot that tries to bring some of each group together, marrying the power of high-performance UAVs but without getting you bankrupt.

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