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Flying Wing  
User currently offlineSkibum9 From United States of America, joined Nov 2001, 1229 posts, RR: 0
Posted (10 years 3 weeks 20 hours ago) and read 2090 times:

I was watching a show on the Discovery Wings channel the other day, and they were discussing how airliner manufacturers have reached the limits of the traditional tube and wing designs. In the show they were discussing how NASA has been doing research into a passenger version of the flying wing called the Blended Wing Body (BWB), but made no mention on when such a new airplane design will surface. Here is a link to what was being discussed:


Has anyone heard of any other research or design going on to move towards this type of design, particularly at the main manufacturers, Boeing and Airbus? I would also imagine that a main issue with this design would be the airports, as the ramp space is configured for traditional aircraft design. So in short, how many decades will pass before we change to this, or some other sort of airliner design?

10 replies: All unread, jump to last
User currently offlineFritzi From United Arab Emirates, joined Jun 2001, 2762 posts, RR: 2
Reply 1, posted (10 years 3 weeks 19 hours ago) and read 2059 times:

Boeing were planning on building a BWB aircraft a few years ago, but they decided to flushed the plans down the toilet.

User currently offlineDl021 From United States of America, joined May 2004, 11446 posts, RR: 76
Reply 2, posted (10 years 3 weeks 19 hours ago) and read 2057 times:
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The two problems I have heard from designers are thus:

1. You cannot take advantage of the wings for pax seating because people would get a roller coaster ride due to the wingtips moving up and down.

2. Passengers want a window fairly close to avoid feelings of claustrophobiam and to be in the middle of a twenty passenger row would put people too far from an actual window for comfort.

Is my Pan Am ticket to the moon still good?
User currently offlineStarlionblue From Greenland, joined Feb 2004, 17002 posts, RR: 67
Reply 3, posted (10 years 3 weeks 17 hours ago) and read 2016 times:

Also, the development costs would be pretty massive. It COULD be done, but there are lots of problems to solve. Easier to build the 7E7.

As Dl021 says, claustophobia is a big problem on a flying wing.

"There are no stupid questions, but there are a lot of inquisitive idiots."
User currently offlineAmericanairfan From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 408 posts, RR: 3
Reply 4, posted (10 years 3 weeks 16 hours ago) and read 1988 times:

Clostrophobia is a major factor in makeing a pasenger version also it'd probaly be very bumpy since its one big wing type thing.

"American 1881 Cleared For Takeoff One Seven Left"
User currently offlineBlackbird1331 From United States of America, joined Apr 2004, 1893 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (10 years 3 weeks 14 hours ago) and read 1945 times:

Part of the window problem could be resolved with cameras for takeoff and landing. A camera view of the terrain below during flight and overhead windows large enough to give everone a "window" seat.

Cameras shoot pictures. Guns shoot people. They have the guns.
User currently offlineLehpron From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 7028 posts, RR: 21
Reply 6, posted (10 years 3 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 1876 times:

The claustrophobia problem exists even now in widebodies, big deal, make the damned thing smaller. Why should all concepts have to be the size of a football field? Don't tell me about specifics, every plane is thought up with a target agenda in mind, the one of the original reasons for the BWB was that we cannot keep increasing the size of the traditional based design for future high densities. A plane twice the size of an A380 would prove inefficient as an A380-sized wing with twice the payload. I think the biggest problem is how to pressurize a hockey puck with wings.

Reversing square-cube, a smaller BWB (not really a flying wing, don't confuse them) may have an advantage over a medium sized airliner, it surprises me no one has looked into this.

Think of a single class layout for the purposes of clairity, where as you enter the plane there are 6 seats and one aisle and as you go to the back, it becomes 10 seat abreast with two aisles. Maybe it will hold 200 pax and be no bigger than a 739 with twice or more the range because of twice or more the wing area/volume. It would be a high-wing, btw.

No claustrophobia, unless you don't like being in between two aisles...

The meaning of life is curiosity; we were put on this planet to explore opportunities.
User currently offlineLtbewr From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 13040 posts, RR: 12
Reply 7, posted (10 years 3 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 1833 times:

The idea of a 'flying wing' passanger aircraft is not a new. This was considered in the mid-50's by Mr. Northorp himself of the now military a/c maker. I believe a prototype was made. To deal with 'claustophia' there would have been windows in the nose including on the front edge of the floor. In a twist, the 'Stealth' bomber has dimensions and appearances very similar of Northorp's original idea. In the 1950's you didn't have the control technology that computers can do today to allow the use of such designs to be workable as 'flying wings' have serious stability issues.

User currently offlineAreopagus From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 1369 posts, RR: 1
Reply 8, posted (10 years 3 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 1796 times:

Boeing were planning on building a BWB aircraft a few years ago, but they decided to flushed the plans down the toilet.

More like: Boeing inherited McDonnell Douglas's BWB work, but made no serious proposal to actually build such an airliner. When Airbus launched the A380, Boeing sniffed that an airliner that big would be more efficient if implemented as a BWB.

User currently offlineVSXA380X800 From United Kingdom, joined May 2004, 421 posts, RR: 1
Reply 9, posted (10 years 2 weeks 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 1693 times:

but they decided to flushed the plans down the toilet.

What is with them, Can they make up thier mind! _sigh_

4 decks 4 engines 4 long haul
User currently offlineLehpron From United States of America, joined Jul 2001, 7028 posts, RR: 21
Reply 10, posted (10 years 2 weeks 1 day 4 hours ago) and read 1610 times:

Unless Airbus makes bank on A380, Boeing has got all bets on 7E7 to simply take care of itself, otherwise they would have tried to develop the BWB as the only contender to A380. But they do not believe the current market (however long, I hope they thought long-term) is big enough for two manufacturers of VLA's. Maybe perhaps in the 2020 era...

Didn't Boeing propose a BWB-variant to replace the aging C-5 Galaxy's for military transport or does the C-17 take care of that for the next few decades?

The meaning of life is curiosity; we were put on this planet to explore opportunities.
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