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The Beginning Of The End For Commercial Aviation?  
User currently offlinePeterinlisbon From Portugal, joined Jan 2006, 616 posts, RR: 0
Posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 14071 times:

About a year ago I posted a thread stating my concerns about the possibility that we would soon reach Peak Oil (see wikipedia or google) and what the consequences would be for commercial aviation. At the time a lot of people said that there were plenty of alternative fuels available, that we could get oil from the tar sands in Canada etc and that this subject was irrelevant to civil aviation. I was wondering if, given recent events, people still feel the same way. Oil prices have reached levels that people thought impossible and they are continuing to rise. Most of the airlines in the USA appear to be losing huge amounts of money. In the long term, it does not make sense to continue to operate a company that continually loses money so the future for even some of the biggest airlines in the world is very uncertain.

My question is whether this is the beginning of the end for commercial aviation. I personally fear that we could be entering a long phase of decline with less companies, less routes and higher prices which will turn flying into something limited to the elite. I don't see that alternative fuels, tar sands or anything else is likely to stop that from happening.

71 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlinePeterinlisbon From Portugal, joined Jan 2006, 616 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 13 hours ago) and read 14039 times:

Just to illustrate the point:

http://www.eosairlines.com/
http://www.oasishongkong.com/gb/en/home.aspx
http://www.maxjet.com/
http://www.ata.com/
http://www.skybus.com/
http://www.alohaairlines.com/


User currently offlineCaspritz78 From Germany, joined Aug 2007, 518 posts, RR: 0
Reply 2, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 13938 times:

Sorry but you are not illustrating anything. Besides Aloha non of your examples are any long standing airlines. They were all start-ups founded during the last decade (besides ATA). Only a few would actually make. That was clear from the beginning. Look at JetBlue. Look at Ryanair. Look at easyjet. All very successful.

The oil peak. We are not at the oil peak. A lot of the increased price has to do with the low value of the Dollar. Also commercial aviation only counts for 2%-3% of the worldwide oil consumption which means that when we reach the point that demand for oil will be higher than supply other industries will be hit harder and will make use of alternatives. As I always said. Before planes are grounded we will all drive electric cars. There is no alternative especially for trans-con and intercontinental traveling.


User currently offlineLTBEWR From United States of America, joined Jan 2004, 13198 posts, RR: 15
Reply 3, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 12 hours ago) and read 13838 times:

I don't think we will see an end, but I do think we have reached a peak of the numbers of people who will be flying world wide. There will be some growth in China and in South Asia as those economies and the middle class grows, but elsewhere we may see a leveling out and a slow decline in the numbers of flyers.
For much of the Americas, Europe some other countries and regions, the ever higher costs of fuel, operational costs and taxes will esclate fares beyond affordable for many working and middle class persons facing higher day to day costs including fuel, consumer goods, health care and food as well as declining incomes and inadequate retirment funds. Add to that security hassles, overloaded hub airports and improvements in communications technology and it is becoming clearer that the best of days for flyers and airlines have long passed.


User currently offlineScbriml From United Kingdom, joined Jul 2003, 12884 posts, RR: 46
Reply 4, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 11 hours ago) and read 13714 times:
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Quoting Peterinlisbon (Thread starter):
Most of the airlines in the USA appear to be losing huge amounts of money.

They are, but plenty of airlines outside the US are making lots of money. EK reported $1.6b profit for the last financial year! I don't think it's valid to look at the situation in the US and extrapolate it to the entire airline industry World-wide.



Time flies like an arrow, but fruit flies like a banana! #44cHAMpion
User currently offlineSashA From Russia, joined May 1999, 861 posts, RR: 0
Reply 5, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 10 hours ago) and read 13630 times:

While I don't think we will see the end of commercial aviation era, even only coz we will reach end of our lifetime sooner than oil will deplete, I am concerned we've already seen the peak of air travel in general. As previous reply stated - the number of people considering air travel will decline, esp intercontentally, in favour of more affordable land-based means.

This will see the frequencies of flights drop and perhaps monopolies on certain routes - with only one or two major airlines serving key destinations... this I fear we may well live to see.

Alternative fuel is out of question still. It doesn't take a scientist to actually realise why we;re still so dependant on oil - the bug boys of the oil industry have for ages influenced any research in alternative fuel. I bet if it came to it, they even used lethal force, dirty tricks to bribe, kill, sabotage otherwise any bright initiatives in shifting our future away from oil, perhaps to even a more effective and environment friendly substance.

What do we have now? Nuclear - gee too far from stable in aircraft environment plus the cooling and safety mechanism will have to so large the plane would be deviating from any of today's aerodynamics principles. The same goes for hydrogen. Cooking oil (yeah, didnt you hear?) - again, too much of it is required any flight beyond 15 mins would need a Beluga size of aircraft... I am not even gonna go into electric power option for airliners...

We should fly while we can...



An2/24/28,Yak42,Tu154/134,IL18/62/96,B737/757/767,A310/320/319,F100,BAe146,EMB-145,CRJ,A340-600,B747-400,A-330-300,A-340
User currently offlineTOLtommy From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 3308 posts, RR: 5
Reply 6, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 13452 times:



Quoting Peterinlisbon (Thread starter):
About a year ago I posted a thread stating my concerns about the possibility that we would soon reach Peak Oil

For some reason, people seem to think that the planet no longer manufactures oil. This is not the case. Large finds have recently been discovered in North Dakota and off the coast of Brazil. There are large finds of oil in Alaska that the liberals in the US have effectively blocked from being tapped. I very much doubt that the days of commercial aviation are coming to an end. Quite frankly, you sound as though you think we will be moving back to an agrarian economy and lifestyle. Other sources of energy will be created because the free market will enable it to happen. The world isn't about to go back to the dark ages.


User currently offlineSTT757 From United States of America, joined Mar 2000, 16907 posts, RR: 51
Reply 7, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 13455 times:

For many of us old enough to remember the Early 1990s was much worse for the aviation industry:

Eastern, Pan Am etc..



Eastern Air lines flt # 701, EWR-MCO Boeing 757
User currently offlineDL767captain From United States of America, joined Mar 2007, 2539 posts, RR: 0
Reply 8, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 13415 times:

The big problem is the fact that we (at least the US) relies so heavily on sources like the middle east to provide our oil where they can jack up the price as high as they want. The US govt screws around with ethanol saying how great it is, which is a bunch of crap, it's good for the farmers but it takes more energy to create and you actually get worse mileage, not to mention when the food price used to make ethanol goes up anything (like meat) that is fed this crop their price will go up to, which has already happened. Now i am no scientist so i don't know what kind of fuel a jetliner could take, as for cars hydrogen seems very promising, there are hydrogen "gas stations" in a european country (sorry i cant remember which one) where the machine uses solar energy and a water pipe to create hydrogen, therefore being almost completely "green".

Oil at $114 is ridiculous! There is an unbelievable amount of oil up in the alaska region but the environmentalists don't want us up there, well then how about they pay us per gallon so the price will be down to what it would be if we were able to supply ourselves with more "home made" oil. Consolidation right now seems like the answer for US carriers as it will bring in more revenue and hopefully make them profitable again, but the countries we get our oil from continue to raise the price and something needs to be done about that before the Aviation industry issue can be solved


User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 20336 posts, RR: 59
Reply 9, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 13396 times:



Quoting DL767captain (Reply 8):
Oil at $114 is ridiculous! There is an unbelievable amount of oil up in the alaska region but the environmentalists don't want us up there, well then how about they pay us per gallon so the price will be down to what it would be if we were able to supply ourselves with more "home made" oil. Consolidation right now seems like the answer for US carriers as it will bring in more revenue and hopefully make them profitable again, but the countries we get our oil from continue to raise the price and something needs to be done about that before the Aviation industry issue can be solved

How about we stop using oil?

Don't you think that it's a bit odd that we're still burning stuff to get our energy?


User currently offlineGrantcv From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 430 posts, RR: 0
Reply 10, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 13392 times:

I think we may be reaching peak oil now. While a lot of the price run up lately is due to the weak dollar and a bit by the US government replenishing our strategic oil reserves (drawn down earlier to lower oil prices back when they were cheaper than now, ironically if I remember correctly), a lot has to do with consumption outstripping increases in production. There isn't much slack in the system so the competition for oil is driving prices up. It doesn't seem that there is much likelihood that oil production is going to increase enough to accomodate future needs so prices are heading upwards even more. Saudi Arabia is adding substantially more oil production capacity, but they face depletion in some of their existing facilities. The world is simply going to have to readjust around the reality of expensive oil.

Hydrogen isn't a source of energy - at least here on earth as it simply doesn't exist in its natural state - it must be extracted. If you extract the hydrogen from water, then that extraction would take more energy than you will get back when you use it to power a plane - something to do with conservation of energy. It seems that the solution to our problem is either to invent a substantially more efficient way of extracting energy from fossil fuels or by finding an alternate source of fuel that doesn't compete with food production. Perhaps we could harvest huge crops of seaweed or algae in the oceans and turn those into jet fuel. I saw that mentioned in AW a few weeks back. Or perhaps there is a way to extract the hydrogen in the fuels we have today that would result in an engine that is more efficient. I read somewhere that hydrocarbon based fuel cells would use fuels far more efficiently that the internal combustion engine. Maybe there is a similar alternative for the jet engine.

The good thing about high oil prices is that it now forces us to look for alternatives.


User currently offlineDocLightning From United States of America, joined Nov 2005, 20336 posts, RR: 59
Reply 11, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 9 hours ago) and read 13266 times:

The solution is nuclear.

For now we should be building more uranium reactors. The US Navy has been operating multiple such reactors for decades aboard their ships and subs without a single notable incident.

A thorium reactor would also be a good option as it generates less radioactive waste and thorium is more plentiful than uranium.

Ultimately, hydrogen fusion will need to replace fission as an energy source. And then we will (for the short term) have a lot of our problems solved.


User currently offlineCaspritz78 From Germany, joined Aug 2007, 518 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 13170 times:



Quoting DL767captain (Reply 8):

Oil at $114 is ridiculous! There is an unbelievable amount of oil up in the alaska region but the environmentalists don't want us up there, well then how about they pay us per gallon so the price will be down to what it would be if we were able to supply ourselves with more "home made" oil.

It is good that there still some people who think preserving nature is more important than cheap fuel for filling up SUVs, heating insufficient insulated houses or making plastic bags for grocery stores. There are so many ways of reducing energy consumption without giving up any comfort. Ways that save easily tons of oil.

About air travel. Since there is no alternative which allows to travel from one continent to another in a reasonable time air travel will continue. Not so sure about short-range and mid-range. There is a chance of alternative ways of travel but I doubt we will see anything during the next 50 years. I also doubt that ticket prices will become astronomical high so that the middle class traveler can't travel anymore. First oil is only one little piece in the cost structure of an airline. Second we will still see jet engine improvements like the geared engine which is tested now. Third other still oil based industries will come up with alternatives reducing the demand for oil.


User currently offlineConnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 13, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 13142 times:



Quoting LTBEWR (Reply 3):
it is becoming clearer that the best of days for flyers and airlines have long passed.

I think DayJet might disagree with you. See this month's "The Atlantic" for an illuminating article.

Quoting DL767captain (Reply 8):
The big problem is the fact that we (at least the US) relies so heavily on sources like the middle east to provide our oil where they can jack up the price as high as they want.

The big problem in the USA is that 5% of the world's population blithely uses 25% of the energy as if it's an entitlement. Americans (and many other societies, Canada, Europeans, Aussies, to name some) need to _actually_ change habits rather than paying lip service to it. Car-pooling, for example. Dumping SUVs for fuel-efficient or hybrid vehicles for another. Expanded use of alternative energy sources live PV solar or solar thermal, run-of-the-river hydro. More nuclear. Think and act outside the box.

Quoting Grantcv (Reply 10):
Hydrogen isn't a source of energy -

Correct, hydrogen is a _fuel_ not an energy source. And developing the delivery infrastructure would cost tens of billions and take a decade or two, minimum.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 11):
For now we should be building more uranium reactors. The US Navy has been operating multiple such reactors for decades aboard their ships and subs without a single notable incident.

A thorium reactor would also be a good option as it generates less radioactive waste and thorium is more plentiful than uranium.

Ultimately, hydrogen fusion will need to replace fission as an energy source. And then we will (for the short term) have a lot of our problems solved.

More nuclear is definitely a good idea, excellent baseload power. Th reactors have their own problems, not least of which the U233 produced has some nasty daughter products. Biggest problem with new build nuclear is where do you get the human resources since most utilities and universities stopped teaching about nuclear quite some time ago.

Fusion ? IMHO, still a long way off, ITER or no ITER.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlineTdscanuck From Canada, joined Jan 2006, 12709 posts, RR: 80
Reply 14, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 13138 times:



Quoting Peterinlisbon (Thread starter):
I was wondering if, given recent events, people still feel the same way. Oil prices have reached levels that people thought impossible and they are continuing to rise.

Peak oil is when the production starts to decline...we're not there yet. Price rise is a whole different phenomenon that's primarily being driven by demand and a dropping US dollar.

Quoting TOLtommy (Reply 6):
For some reason, people seem to think that the planet no longer manufactures oil. This is not the case. Large finds have recently been discovered in North Dakota and off the coast of Brazil.

The large finds in North Dakota and Brazil aren't newly manufactured. Technically, oil is renewable, but the time horizon is so long that it's functionally unrenewable from our point of view. The new finds are oil that's been there for millions of years. We just found it now.

Quoting TOLtommy (Reply 6):
There are large finds of oil in Alaska that the liberals in the US have effectively blocked from being tapped.

There *may* be large finds of oil in Alaska. There is exactly one test well dug in ANWAR and that log is tightly locked up at BP. Even if you found another Prudhoe Bay (extremely unlikely), the effect on the global oil supply is quite tiny.

Quoting DL767captain (Reply 8):
The big problem is the fact that we (at least the US) relies so heavily on sources like the middle east

This is another fairly pervasive myth...the US only gets 30% of its imports from the Middle East. Of that 30%, 61% comes from Saudia Arabia, with which we have a pretty good relationship and relatively low security risk.

Canada and Mexico together supply more oil to the US than the entire Middle East combined.

Tom.


User currently offlineFrontierflyer From United States of America, joined Aug 2007, 216 posts, RR: 1
Reply 15, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 8 hours ago) and read 13099 times:

Anything is possible at this point, as long as there are greedy oil executives and politicians, there is no reason to look for alternative fuels. It will probably cone down to only the elite that can fly as we saw in the begining of aviation.

User currently offlineGrantcv From United States of America, joined Apr 2005, 430 posts, RR: 0
Reply 16, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 13030 times:



Quoting DL767captain (Reply 8):
The big problem is the fact that we (at least the US) relies so heavily on sources like the middle east to provide our oil where they can jack up the price as high as they want.

Strategically it makes way more sense for the use to depend on foreign oil reserves for as long as possible. Oil is a non-renewable resource and over time it becomes less and less economically viable. If we use up our own resource today to lower oil from $120 a barrel to say $60 a barrel, and we use up all over our resource, what happens when oil starts really getting scarce - we will have none left and those that still have some will be able to charge pretty much whatever they want to - it will go to the highest bidder. When that starts happening, the US economy with probably be in third place, and our barganing power will put us in a poor position.


User currently offlineAircellist From Canada, joined Oct 2004, 1735 posts, RR: 8
Reply 17, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 7 hours ago) and read 12963 times:

It's nice to see so many people optimistic about the future of air transport...

Personnally, though, I share your concern, Peter... I just read in my local newspaper an article about the possibility of oil at 225$ per barrel, based on a research by an economist at the CIBC (Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce) named Jeff RUbin, who had, three years ago, foreseen oil at 100$ppb...

http://research.cibcwm.com/res/Eco/EcoResearch.html

look at the first featured article: How much higher will oil prices go?

... air transport as we have known it for the last 40 years will soon be something of the past.

Where are we going? Back to sailboats, or to dirigibles (arguably much faster, and with all the engineering progress of the century)? Electric planes? Don't know...

But oil is becoming scarce. And I do not find it morally sustainable to starve a few billion people to be able to fuel our planes with biofuel... I prefer not to fly, if this is to be the case.


User currently offlinePeterinlisbon From Portugal, joined Jan 2006, 616 posts, RR: 0
Reply 18, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 12924 times:

I am not of the opinion that we are going to have to go back to the stone age or anything like that. I think that for most purposes oil can be replaced by other sources of energy. There is also a huge amount of waste, especially in the US (massive cars, lack of public transport, etc) which means that there is room to reduce consumption and therefore stretch out the supply. However, I don't see governments taking the sort of emergency action that really needs to be taken at this point. Running out completely is a very long way away and there is no need to panic - I don't believe in the Mad Max scenario. But we do need to drastically cut down on consumption in order to avoid a hard landing (and we are in for a very hard landing if we don't wake up in time). In order to save our airlines we need to use other sources of energy for land based transport, because I don't think we will see any practical alternative that we can use for aviation for a very long time.

The problem is the price of oil and it has already reached a point that is driving a lot of airlines out of business. It may be a small part of the overall cost now for airlines but if it doubles again then it becomes twice as important. It is not just in the USA where airlines have gone out of business. The slide of the dollar is a factor but there again the fact that the dollar has lost so much value has a lot to do with America's dependence on oil. I was looking at some charts showing how the price of oil has multiplied several times over the past few years and pattern is the same whether you look at the price in dollars, pounds, euros or yen. I think the rest of the world is behind the USA in this sense but that could change tomorrow if the exchange rate changes. The first companies to go have been the ones that were most vunerable and that is logical but no airline can lose money indefinately. Would you invest your money in a company that was losing more money every day?


User currently offlineMoo From Falkland Islands, joined May 2007, 4089 posts, RR: 4
Reply 19, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 12905 times:



Quoting DocLightning (Reply 9):
How about we stop using oil?

Don't you think that it's a bit odd that we're still burning stuff to get our energy?



Quoting DocLightning (Reply 11):
The solution is nuclear.

The problem is not finding an alternative energy source that doesn't require burning, there are plenty around (nuclear fission, later fusion, solar, wind, hydro etc etc).

The problem is more basic than that - energy storage. Gasoline/petrol is one of the *best* energy storage mediums available to us at this moment. It has a very high energy density compared to alternatives (even biofuels are less dense), its easy to refine, store and transport and its cheap.

You can't easily store the energy that is output by nuclear, wind etc. Its produced and its consumed, storage is highly problematic. You can't use large amounts of batteries in an aircraft because you end up carrying a heck of a lot of extra weight 100% of the trip distance (something you don't do with gasoline/petrol/jetA - as its consumed, your aircraft becomes lighter). Batteries also do not store the same energy at the same density - energy stored in batteries is less dense, meaning less energy in the same capacity, meaning shorter trips or less payload.

So you alternatives are basically down to a storage medium you can burn - biofuels. Still not as dense, but closer than the other alternatives. And you are still burning.

Once you find an alternative energy storage medium that comes anywhere near rivaling gasoline/petrol (and its related aviation fuel cousins), you come a lot closer to solving the whole problem.


User currently offlineAirbuster From Netherlands, joined Mar 2007, 454 posts, RR: 1
Reply 20, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 12873 times:

Wh does everyone forget to mention the biggest free source of energy available, every day, the sun. We need to construct buildings/homes/cars etc out of solar panels, imagine, even all the lights in the street could work on solar cells and traffic lights and well a lot actually. Use deserts like the sahara to install gigantic solar fields and sience will have to come up with efficient ways of storing or using this power. Cars can run on electricity, so can motorbikes, trains, a lot of ground based transport can.

and save all that valuable fuel, to fuel our aviation needs, if it's only 3-5% of our total earthly oil consumption, then using methods described above should give a gigantic extension on the future of aviation.

the thing is to get our leaders, goverments and scientists to invest in this. Without an investment now, there will be economic decline!

anyway, want to invest? invest in solar technology companies in asia!

rgds

ab



FLY FOKKER JET LINE!
User currently offlineConnies4ever From Canada, joined Feb 2006, 4066 posts, RR: 13
Reply 21, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 12819 times:



Quoting Aircellist (Reply 17):
... air transport as we have known it for the last 40 years will soon be something of the past.

Air transport as we remember it from 40 years ago is already a thing of the past (with a few exceptions).

Quoting Peterinlisbon (Reply 18):
I am not of the opinion that we are going to have to go back to the stone age or anything like that. I think that for most purposes oil can be replaced by other sources of energy

The big issue I see when we get to the point of seriously dwindling oil supplies is where do the lubricants come from ? Everything that moves depends on petroleum-based lubricants. We can't exactly harvest sperm whales to provide same. We can make synthetic lubricants from coal but that itself takes a lot of energy to produce.

Quoting Airbuster (Reply 20):
Wh does everyone forget to mention the biggest free source of energy available, every day, the sun.

I didn't forget that in my initial response. But PV solar arrays, for example, require a hell of a lot of solar panels to produce the kinds of power that industry requires. They are, however, currently useful for home applications.

One other thing we need to be serious about is capturing and using what is currently wasted, such as the steam going out a stack. It can be used to spin a turbine or to provide hot water or to heat something like a greenhouse -- so that in winter here in Canada we can grow fresh produce locally.



Nostalgia isn't what it used to be.
User currently offlineAstuteman From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2005, 10239 posts, RR: 97
Reply 22, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 6 hours ago) and read 12759 times:
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Quoting Peterinlisbon (Thread starter):
Most of the airlines in the USA appear to be losing huge amounts of money

They've been doing that for years.... What's the price of oil got to do with that?
There are airlines outside the USA making profits measured in $Billions. Should they stop trading?  scratchchin 

Quoting SashA (Reply 5):
As previous reply stated - the number of people considering air travel will decline, esp intercontentally, in favour of more affordable land-based means.

How so? An energy shortage is an energy shortage.  scratchchin 
Land-based transport will get more expensive just as quickly as air travel.
As it is, analysts predict that the average fuel used by the airline industry per 100 passenger kilometers will fall from 5 litres to 3 litres in the next 20 years. The airline industry has plenty of scope to grow without using significantly more fuel...

Quoting SashA (Reply 5):
Nuclear - gee too far from stable in aircraft environment plus the cooling and safety mechanism will have to so large the plane would be deviating from any of today's aerodynamics principles

But Nuclear power is a source of considerable energy that can fairly readily be used for the synthesis of liquid fuels for transport purposes, as well as providing power for land-based use.  yes 

Quoting Connies4ever (Reply 13):
Biggest problem with new build nuclear is where do you get the human resources since most utilities and universities stopped teaching about nuclear quite some time ago.

Very topical indeed for me....  biggrin 

Nuclear submarine shipyards (like mine  Smile ) have arguably the lions share of experienced nuclear engineers left today- that's certainly true in the UK. (Of course those forward-looking French have a distinct advanage....  Wink )
Perhaps its no coincidence that just this month I was asked if I was prepared to move off the Astute programme on to a, er, "commercial joint venture....."  scratchchin   Wink

The industry is very well aware of a) the potential out there, and b) what it needs to do.

In 20 years time, I predict there'll be twice as many people flying as there are today.....  yes   thumbsup 

Regards


User currently offlineKarlB737 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 3143 posts, RR: 10
Reply 23, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 12749 times:



Quoting Peterinlisbon (Thread starter):
About a year ago I posted a thread stating my concerns about the possibility that we would soon reach Peak Oil (see wikipedia or google) and what the consequences would be for commercial aviation.

A motivation to get a replacement would seem to be in order. Unfortunately a better one has been hidden from most of this world for 50 years.

Quoting Caspritz78 (Reply 2):
There is no alternative especially for trans-con and intercontinental traveling.

When this dependence on oil becomes too great and too costly the pressure to get something else will have to surface. I believe that time is now.

Quoting SashA (Reply 5):
Alternative fuel is out of question still.

Is is our only answer.

Quoting TOLtommy (Reply 6):
Other sources of energy will be created because the free market will enable it to happen.

It has already been created by others and secretly via reverse-engineering has been figured out as to how it works 40 or 50 years ago.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 9):
How about we stop using oil? Don't you think that it's a bit odd that we're still burning stuff to get our energy?

Yes, but when a better way is kept from the world and the general public for 50 years thats the way it goes.

Quoting Grantcv (Reply 10):
The good thing about high oil prices is that it now forces us to look for alternatives.

Now this person has hit the nail right on the head.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 11):
The solution is nuclear.

I don't agree. I used to but the plants are too expensive and take to long to build. We have to break away quicker from our overseas dependence on oil.

Quoting Caspritz78 (Reply 12):
There is a chance of alternative ways of travel but I doubt we will see anything during the next 50 years

I would bet within 5 years we will see a new energy propulsion system available which will achieve this because the need is so great now for our break way from oil.

Quoting Grantcv (Reply 16):
Strategically it makes way more sense for the use to depend on foreign oil reserves for as long as possible.

It is costing everybody too much money to remain dependent on foreign oil.

I have been waiting for the right thread to come along to insert this in. It seems that this is the one. If I told you the propulsion system that was discovered long ago you would not believe me. However if the need for an alternative becomes great enough I will ask you to balance what will be your skepticism in one hand coupled with our national energy need in your other hand.

In other words as we sit hear and watch the oil prices climb almost daily coupled with a rope around our neck which is our dependence on oil we find ourselves in an almost impossible situation. However within the last year I came across a discovery which could change all of that.

For now lets start with this:

Advanced Energy Research Organization
http://www.aero2012.com/en/orion.html

Note this text within:

"These breakthroughs in physics- so-called Zero Point Energy, electro-gravitic propulsion and other systems- have, up to this point, been developed and hidden in illegally classified projects in the US, UK and elsewhere."

I cannot explain all of this as well as Dr. Steven Greer can so I will defer to this 3 part interview. Let me emphasize that I know that many if not all of you will be skeptical on this matter completely. I fully undersand that completely. Remain skeptical until you are satisfied with the fact that we have a big energy problem in our left hand and a highly probable solution in our right hand coupled with the need for action. I too am skeptical however with the need being as great as it is especially for your car, and our airlines, and energy in general I hope you will agree that this matter is at least worth looking into until we all know more about what could change our whole energy landscape.

Mr. Greer Discussion:

Part One
http://youtube.com/watch?v=g5gFW5suwCY

Part Two
http://youtube.com/watch?v=M6kWI6LAVHQ&feature=related

Part Three
http://youtube.com/watch?v=chbRQZ5Oj3c&feature=related


User currently offlineHalls120 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 24, posted (6 years 7 months 4 weeks 5 hours ago) and read 12734 times:



Quoting LTBEWR (Reply 3):
I don't think we will see an end, but I do think we have reached a peak of the numbers of people who will be flying world wide. There will be some growth in China and in South Asia as those economies and the middle class grows, but elsewhere we may see a leveling out and a slow decline in the numbers of flyers.

Not picking on you, LTBEWR, but I have to hake my head at amazement at all the doomsayers out there.

At one time in this country (the 19th century, I believe), there were calls to close down the U.S. Patent Office, because everything that could be invented had been invented.

Right.

Quoting Astuteman (Reply 22):
In 20 years time, I predict there'll be twice as many people flying as there are today.....

I agree.


25 DL767captain : I agree but what do you suggest? The recent Boeing hydrogen test wasn't very promising, i'm not making fun or anything i'm generally curious. Yes but
26 TN757Flyer : It will catch up eventually. The former head of the World Bank gave a rather gloomy assessment of the World economy recently (I can't find the link a
27 Astuteman : They did in the past. But they don't have to in the future ...... What's sauce for the 787........ (Figure on the potential for a reduction in "final
28 Maskeer : That's quite a good point. I don't want to nerdify this thread, but a few weeks ago I read an interesting article in The Economist, about research in
29 Post contains links Peterinlisbon : I was reading about the tests Boeing did with a fuel cell aircraft here in Madrid. However, that was practically a glider and only had enough power to
30 Post contains links ODwyerPW : I check this site often: http://www.lifeaftertheoilcrash.net/ It's applicable.
31 Tdscanuck : It's not an entitlement, they're paying for it. Paying a lot. The sellers of oil are absolutely free to sell to anyone else if they want to. Tom.
32 CEO@AFG : A 10min video about Peak oil: [Edited 2008-04-27 14:49:30]
33 ODwyerPW : The US is using much more than 25% of the world's energy...it's closer to 50%...of course the US will argue in turn that it contributes close to 50% o
34 B777a340fan : Okay - This is not going to anyone in particular, but I think: COMMERCIAL AIRLINE IS NOT (emphasis emphasis) GOING TO DISAPPEAR! Yes, there is a probl
35 Post contains links Mortyman : Indeed This is something that we are looking into in Norway. Norway has the estimated 7th largest reserve of Thorium in the world. Some estimates say
36 Post contains links Mortyman : An interesting article on Thorium here, from thye Independant in the UK: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/sc...r-to-our-energy-crisis-428279.html Int
37 Connies4ever : Perhaps entitlement is not the correct word, but they seem to think that they should have assured access to this (non-renewable over reasonable time
38 Grantcv : " target=_blank>http://www.independent.co.uk/news/sc....html That's an interesting read. I have never heard of Thorium energy before. I love the Gree
39 Jetmatt777 : Ethanol is a joke, gas prices are still rising, and food prices for virtually anything at the grocery store, is skyrocketing as well, because either a
40 DocLightning : There is hydrogen. You use nuclear power to crack water into hydrogen and oxygen and bottle the hydrogen. It requires more volume than petroleum fuel
41 UA772IAD : The price of oil is purely political, at this point. Oil companies are able to charge a higher premium because companies and individuals are still wi
42 MidEx216 : I did not see your thread last year, nor do I know specifics on oil production, etc.. but I myself have been wondering the exact same thing. In just t
43 Fonseca33 : Oil is in a bubble, so it is very likely that it will crash, just like many other bubbles out there.
44 Jetdeltamsy : I laugh. I was with Eastern for 11 years until the shutdown, then hopped over to PanAm until I was "absorbed" by Delta. Now I work for AA. We are in
45 KochamLOT : If airlines and aircraft manufacturers become more proactive, the industry will be able to survive at least a lot longer. More composite design studie
46 Learjet23 : We don't need oil to fly planes....... Hell boy, here in the USA we got Diet Coke and Mentos out the ja ja!
47 PDXCessna206 : As much as I hate these "oil and politic threads", I must reply. We get most of our oil from the US and Canada, and some from Latin America. Not a wh
48 Semsem : Did anyone 1 year ago think that oil would reach $120? The price of oil will reach $200 + within a few years. The price has nothing to do with the val
49 Grantcv : What I read is that 10 years ago the world could produce 84 million barrels of oil a day, but we used just 74 million. With excess capacity, prices we
50 PDXCessna206 : It does too.
51 JayinKitsap : Some sensible things that can increase energy production outside petroleum: - Weed tree plantations - fast growing woody plants that can be harvested
52 Burkhard : More than half of the oil that western world uses is just for climatisation of our homes and offices. And the technology is available to reduce the en
53 Connies4ever : The problem with that argument is that you wind up using more energy to separate the water into H2 & O2 than you get back during recombination. You d
54 Planesarecool : Hang on, wasn't everyone saying that aviation was going to decline after 9/11? A few companies went bust, and then after a few years the industry was
55 Moo : Weight means very little, as the key here is energy density. Liquid Hydrogen has an energy density of about 10 Mega Joules per Litre (MJ/L) while you
56 DocLightning : And if you generate that energy cleanly, who cares? It costs a lot less to make a joule of wind energy than it does to make a joule of oil
57 DocLightning : You've added no more heat to the atmosphere than you did drilling for, pumping, and burning the oil.
58 Fonseca33 : The US has been the leading economy in the world since WW1, and the gap over the past 25 years between it and the old world has grown, in aggregate a
59 Moo : I never said you did, just that it wasn't a zero sum game like you suggested. But I would like to know, how can you be sure you aren't adding more he
60 Moo : Again, its not about production, its about storage - yes, fine, create the energy cheaply, now store it and get it to me in a package I don't have to
61 DocLightning : I don't know that the numbers are available. Sometimes, what is intiutively a less efficient form of energy production becomes more efficient. Ideall
62 Osiris30 : Agreed. Nuclear is the clear short term solution to the problem IMHO. Everyone forgets about the energy cost to make these things. Solar cells are gr
63 DocLightning : Biofuels with current technology aren't efficient at all. Now, this new algae thing might actually be good. It would burn carbon, but the carbon woul
64 Fonseca33 : All this talk is rediculous. If oil drops 40%, which it has done historically, then everybody will be silent.
65 Joecanuck : One of the problems with oil isn't that there isn't enough of it, it's that the infrastructure isn't in place to move the supply to market. There's wa
66 Moo : Diesel electrics are mainly used where large gearing systems are impractical - trains are a prime example, as otherwise you would need huge gear rati
67 Fonseca33 : With regards to the import tariffs, if the US were to eliminate them and allow a huge supply of Brazilian sugar, then would more of the rainforest be
68 DocLightning : If the hydrogen is cracked from water already in the hydrosphere, then there is neither net gain nor loss. In fact, it would lead to a transient net
69 Moo : Don't buy it off Brazil then, they aren't the only country producing it in large quantities. If it could become a good cash crop, get third world cou
70 Post contains links Exusair : To the thread starter, many thanks for revisiting this topic. I recall contributing last year mentioning a project ongoing in South Africa and am happ
71 Post contains links Peterinlisbon : It looks like the press and the industry in general are starting to pick up on what peak oil could mean for the future of aviation: http://www.fcnp.co
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