SA-born Flying-V project manager describes radical re-design of aircraft

A radical re-design of long-haul aircraft is set to change the aviation sector, and cut carbon emissions by up to 20%.

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines and Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands have teamed up to create the "Flying V" for Airbus - whereas the name suggests, the plane will be V-shaped and passengers will be seated in the wings of the aircraft.

Designers say that this will make it lighter and more aerodynamic.

The team is planning to have a scale model ready for a test flight in October, and the project manager for the building of this 1:20 model is Malcom Brown - who was born and raised in South Africa!

John Maytham talks to South African-born Malcolm Brown who will be part of a radical re-design of long-haul aircraft that will cut carbon emissions by up to 20%. KLM Royal Dutch Airlines and Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands have teamed up to create the "Flying V" for Airbus where passengers sit in the wings.

The aircraft does indeed look like a 'V'...and that allows us to integrate the fuselage - where the people sit - into the wings of the aircraft...which reduces the drag of the aircraft and lower fuel burn.

Malcolm Brown, Project manager - Flying V aircraft

This would reduce fuel consumption by 20% compared to current aircraft, he says.

You make your choice, left or right-hand side of the wing. There will be two aisles with three seats on each side and five seats in the middle.

Malcolm Brown, Project manager - Flying V aircraft

He says runway design will not need to be modified in any way.

It will have a 65-metre wingspan from tip-to-tip and is shorter than conventional aircraft.

Malcolm Brown, Project manager - Flying V aircraft

Brown describes more features and says it will be "good to go" in current airports.

He says there is more research and development and it will take about 15 to 20 years before these aircraft take to the skies.

Listen to the interview below:


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