Its glider-like wings are so long that their tips would likely have to fold up to fit at the airport gate, adding unwanted weight and complexity. The "double bubble" D8 Series future aircraft design concept comes from the research team led by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. NASA/MIT/Aurora Flight Sciences Meanwhile, the double-wide fuselage of Aurora's D8 Double Bubble airliner seemingly two cigars merged side-by-side enables the introduction of a new, fuel-saving propulsion concept NASA researchers call Boundary Layer Ingestion, or BLI. It's a potentially game-changing technology, Heidmann says, but one that requires moving the engines from the wings to the top of the rear fuselage (a layout that mimics Lockheed's L-1011 Tristar , a pioneering design of the recent past). Suck it in, Spit it Out One promising BLI-based airliner design is the STARC-ABL, an acronym for "single-aisle turbo-electric aircraft with an aft boundary layer propulsor." Think of a standard Boeing 737, except with a module cheap flights to las vegas last minute the same diameter as the fuselage attached to the tail like a wasp's stinger. STARC-ABL. flights NASA This airliner "combines the benefits of hybrid-electric propulsion with the proven tube-and-wing configuration," Heidmann says. Such cheap flights to los angeles last minute a BLI-demonstrator could be possible in five to ten years. Inside its rear-mounted power pod is an electrically driven fan that provides propulsion while also ingesting much of the slow-moving boundary layer air that flows next to the fuselage. This low-energy air enters a front intake vent and is blown out the back, reenergizing the plane's wake to cut aerodynamic drag.

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