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Aviation in Transition Challenges and Opportunities of Liberalisation The Future of Liberalisation Professor Ian Poll Director Cranfield College of Aeronautics The Father of the Aeroplane Sir George Cayley (1773 – 1857) Why was Cayley interested in flight?

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The Father of the Aeroplane

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Aviation in TransitionChallenges and Opportunities of LiberalisationThe Future of LiberalisationProfessor Ian PollDirector Cranfield College of Aeronautics

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The Father of the Aeroplane

Sir George Cayley (1773 – 1857)

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Why was Cayley interested in flight?

  • He recognised that the industrial revolution needed transportation to bring raw materials to the factories and to take the products to market.

  • He saw clearly that road, rail and sea were limited.

    However transport by air would remove many of the limitations of the other modes and would bring huge economic benefits

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  • After 100 years there is now a clear divergence of civil and military aviation.

  • Civil aircraft are now treated as commodities – airframe is no longer a major target for research

  • Technology is now just as important on the ground as it is in the air

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The Drivers

  • Economy

  • Safety

  • Security

  • Environment

    “Cheaper, Safer and Cleaner”

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Technology to reduce costs

  • Health and usage monitoring – only service the aircraft when absolutely necessary

  • New air traffic solutions – cut out waste

  • De-skilling piloting and ATM tasks – reduce cost of staff

  • Better use of IT to reduce cost of sales, links with supply chain etc

  • More efficient training methods

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Technology to improve safety

  • Reduce piloting intervention – 80% of accidents involve human error

  • Use of virtual reality to overcome physical difficulties e.g. all round vision, poor weather visibility

  • ATM systems that separate aircraft rather than bunch them together

  • More effective training systems

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Technology to improve security

  • Ability to screen for weapons and explosives

  • Internationally linked data bases for rapid identification of undesirable individuals

  • Designated “no go” areas built into flight control systems

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Technology to protect the environment

  • Use of fuel cells to provide aircraft electrical power on the ground

  • Proper treatment of runoff water and better disposal of unpleasant substances both at the airport and in the manufacturing and disposal processes

  • Better multi-modal linking to reduce congestion

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The real problem is at 35,000’

Growth rates of 5-6% will result in a 4 fold increase fuel burn in the next 25 years

Can anyone believe that this could (or should) be allowed to happen?

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My conclusion is that aviation, as we know it today, is probably non- sustainable. What is the path for future development?

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Is it this?

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Or is it this?

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Blended Wing Body

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BWB versus Conventional

  • With fully turbulent flow L/D better by up to 30% (better than a conventional aircraft with a laminar flow wing)

  • Fuel burn per passenger seat mile up 25% (needs bigger engine)

  • With laminar flow BWB has an L/D 4 times larger than a conventional a/c)

    These advantages are going to become hard to ignore

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  • Technology has been used to solve many challenges over the past 50 years

  • Emerging technologies can solve many of today’s issues. They can help deliver the “new way” for aviation and they can produce new business opportunities for a liberalised industry

  • Most importantly, technology holds the key to the long term sustainability of civil aviation

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