But it could be in the future, at least if some of Airbuses suggestions are followed. That's right, a company that's been responsible for a heckuva lot of carbon emissions has actually come up with a bunch of darn good strategies for making flights more eco-friendly. They include:
- Changing the ways planes take off. If a plane could be shot out, as if being propelled by a slingshot, it could achieve its cruising altitude in a far more efficient fashion, reducing both emissions and noise. That may sound wacky, but remember that the sea planes that take off from aircraft carriers are already using this sort of technology (since runways are necessarily short aboard these carriers).
- Flying more like birds do: Instead of using established air corridors, airplanes could, with the help of new technology, simply fly the most direct routes. That could mean hours trimmed from transatlantic and transpacific itineraries. They might also fly in formation with planes going in the same direction in order to reduce the effects of wind drag.
- Landing slower. Instead of coming in at full throttle, aircrafts might simply glide onto the runway. The runways could be shorter then, and noise pollution would be significantly decreased (as would emmissions).
- The use of other forms of energy: Yes, someday planes might fly on solar power, or the wind they generate, or use bio-diesels. Hopefully that day isn't too far in the future.