mikesbucky
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Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 1:49 pm

After reading the UA Forcing 787 Window "shades" To Be Blackened thread it made me wonder if windowless aircraft are the future. From most of the responses in that thread, it seems that most people would be thrilled by the notion of no light coming into the cabin. Airlines would like it because removing the windows would result in substantial weight savings. Exits would still require windows for evacuation, but the rest could go. Personally, I'd hate it because I like looking out the window. It's one of the few remaining pleasures of flight, but I seem to be in the minority.

So I put it out there for discussion. Are future passenger aircraft going to have windows?
 
LSZH34
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 1:58 pm

I hope not. The majority is really missing something when not looking out of the window. Views you don't get to see everyday... but that's considered weird nowadays for non-av geeks.
 
jetsetter1969
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 2:01 pm

Wasnt there a proposed blended wing body or something that had no windows but would have cameras for views to be available to passengers?

Cheers
dave
 
bmacleod
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 2:21 pm

Quoting jetsetter1969 (Reply 2):
Wasnt there a proposed blended wing body or something that had no windows but would have cameras for views to be available to passengers?

The X-48, don't know how far it will go as development is concerned....

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Boeing_X-48

[Edited 2015-09-25 07:22:30]
"What good are wings without the courage to fly?" - Atticus
 
kraz911
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 2:24 pm

Hello all,

You have my vote from #62 from the above mentioned thread. Again, I hope its later than sooner....
 
SJCMSP
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 2:28 pm

When I look at out the window I always think about how in all of human history, so few have gotten to view the Earth from that vantage point. It's odd to me that more don't appreciate that.
 
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exFWAOONW
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 4:40 pm

Take away the windows, and you might as well be strapped down naked and drugged while flying.
Is just me, or is flying not as much fun anymore?
 
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VS4ever
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 4:50 pm

Quoting exFWAOONW (Reply 6):
Take away the windows, and you might as well be strapped down naked and drugged while flying.

I hope to god not, nobody needs to see that, especially of me... I'm not the ugliest guy in the world (got to have a little self promotion from time to time), but nobody needs to see me naked on a plane, drugged or otherwise..

I see why it might be a good idea to some, but I think people would hate it, feeling a lot more confined to their tube. At least with the windows you feel like there is an outside world out there. Sure you can drop the shades, but that's an option not a requirement and the outside light makes things feel just a little better while you are squeezed into the middle seat.

You might get serious issues of Claustrophobia too if you remove them,

It's kind of like the stand up seats idea, it's an idea but is it really workable in practice.
That feeling when you sit at the end of a runway, brakes are released and the raw power takes over. Now that is a thing of beauty and it never gets old.
 
32andBelow
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 4:52 pm

You would need windows in an emergency. You need to see what is going on outside the aircraft during an evacuation.
 
mikesbucky
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 4:56 pm

Quoting VS4ever (Reply 7):
I see why it might be a good idea to some, but I think people would hate it, feeling a lot more confined to their tube. At least with the windows you feel like there is an outside world out there. Sure you can drop the shades, but that's an option not a requirement and the outside light makes things feel just a little better while you are squeezed into the middle seat.

That goes to the point I was making when I opened this topic. Based off the posts in the other thread, it seems that most would be happier without the windows. They would prefer the shades are always down. In that case, what purpose do the windows serve.
 
ArmitageShanks
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 4:57 pm

Quoting exFWAOONW (Reply 6):

Take away the windows, and you might as well be strapped down naked and drugged while flying.

That actually sounds quite fun.
 
mikesbucky
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 4:57 pm

Quoting 32andBelow (Reply 8):
You would need windows in an emergency. You need to see what is going on outside the aircraft during an evacuation.

You need them at the exits, not at every row.
 
32andBelow
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 4:59 pm

Quoting mikesbucky (Reply 11):
You need them at the exits, not at every row.

You wouldn't want to be able to see that the right wing is on fire from every seat on the right side in deciding which direction to evacuate?
 
bohica
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 5:08 pm

Quoting exFWAOONW (Reply 6):
Take away the windows, and you might as well be strapped down naked

On DL you would be at the mercy of Mistress Deltalina.
 
mikesbucky
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 5:16 pm

Quoting 32andBelow (Reply 12):
You wouldn't want to be able to see that the right wing is on fire from every seat on the right side in deciding which direction to evacuate?

In a fire situation people won't be looking out the window to see where the fire is. They'll be stampeding to get out. The people in the exit rows may be looking to see if it's ok to open the door/hatch, but the rest will be preoccupied just trying to get out. I'm not saying I want to get rid of the windows. I want them, but it seems from the other thread that most could care less.
 
spacecadet
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 5:37 pm

I think the problem is that window seats have become kind of a pain in the butt. When I started flying you'd have like 38" of seat pitch and more often than not nobody sitting next to you. So sitting in the window seat, you'd have the views but you wouldn't have to worry about being trapped in there. Worst case the person on the aisle might have to sit up a little bit for you to pass. It wasn't a big deal, even if you got up several times just to go walk around or grab a snack.

Nowadays a window seat is like a little prison. You've almost always got three people crammed into a tiny little row and it's actually kind of a production for everyone to get out of the way if you need to use the bathroom or something. Everybody has to actually stand up (which in itself isn't that easy) and exit the row for the person at the window to get out.

I don't mind window seats on very short flights or on flights with 2 seat rows when I'm with my wife, but on long-haul flights I avoid window seats like the plague. I do like to look out the window, but that doesn't outweigh the downsides of that seat.

I don't know that the seat nearest the "wall" of any BWB plane would be any better, but I can imagine that being freed up from having to design a "cigar with wings", designers might be able to do something different with the cabin layout. I dunno what; sit everybody in concentric circles or something. The point is it might not have to be the familiar rows upon rows with somebody jammed in against the wall on both sides of each row.
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scbriml
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 5:45 pm

Quoting exFWAOONW (Reply 6):
Take away the windows, and you might as well be strapped down naked and drugged while flying.

Now you're talking. Where do I sign up?
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danman132x
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 5:49 pm

Windows need to stay. When did peoples mind change about windows. It's nice to be able to see outside when flying. I don't want to be flying and not able to see out, to me the thought is silly to have no windows.. Is everyone so self centered and on their phones or electronics constantly that windows aren't necessary. Like mentioned above, most people can't see the world from that view much, if at all. It's a terrific view. I get there may be times they want it dark so people can sleep, but takeoff, landing and some phases of flight it is nice to see..
 
Yflyer
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 5:56 pm

I think without windows you'd have more people getting airsick. As someone who's susceptible to motion sickness it really helps to be able to see out the window in order to orient myself.
 
rta
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 6:10 pm

Quoting mikesbucky (Thread starter):
it seems that most people would be thrilled by the notion of no light coming into the cabin

Consider your source... a few anetters in that thread. They are hardly representative of all the flying people, and probably not even representative of all of anet. But if I remember correctly, they mainly said they'd prefer the cabin dark at some point during "overnight" flights. I doubt anyone want 100% darkness all the time, both those anetters and "normal" passengers alike

[Edited 2015-09-25 11:14:15]
 
1g
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 6:15 pm

As much as I enjoy flying I don't think I wouldn't mind the absence of windows. Really there's only an appeal on take-off and landing. Honestly I'd prefer a night dark cabin during a daylight long-haul flight than be able to look out the window during take off and landing.

But I have to admit not being able to look out during an approach to IST to runway 23 would be a great miss  
Or on approach to LGA when you fly right over Manhattan  
 
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TWA772LR
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 6:27 pm

Imagine there's a serious accident and the power goes out. It would be a lot easier to evac a plane with conventional windows that require no electricity than TBs that are permanently off.

I hope this never happens, along with the pilot-less commercial aircraft.
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YULWinterSkies
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 6:40 pm

Quoting mikesbucky (Reply 14):
In a fire situation people won't be looking out the window to see where the fire is. They'll be stampeding to get out.

Not exactly. They will in fact be stampeding to reach the overhead compartment and their suitcase out with them.

Quoting 1g (Reply 20):
Really there's only an appeal on take-off and landing

For a red-eye, yes.
For a flight over the Western US in daylight on a clear day, every single day is awe.
The Alps and the Andes also aren't too shabby to fly over, and neither is a descent over the San Francisco bay, Nice or Geneva and their tortuous approaches.

I choose a window seat if there is a chance of some scenery to be enjoyed. If not, aisle is good.

I would not be very thrilled at window-less a/c, and I wonder whether claustrophobia could not become too much of an issue among pax for airlines not to go for this.
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cloudboy
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 6:45 pm

Quoting rta (Reply 19):
Consider your source... a few anetters in that thread. They are hardly representative of all the flying people, and probably not even representative of all of anet. But if I remember correctly, they mainly said they'd prefer the cabin dark at some point during "overnight" flights. I doubt anyone want 100% darkness all the time, both those anetters and "normal" passengers alike

Unfortunately by virtue of my recent flights, it seems most people close the windows. As in, well over 3/4 of them if not more. First class is almost always a cave any time of day.

I get that for the people who don't like flying anyways and just want to completely trance themselves out. But why so many aviation enthusiasts, including frequent flyers, choose to is beyond me. Why not just stay at home?
"Six becoming three doesn't create more Americans that want to fly." -Adam Pilarski
 
hh65man
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 6:49 pm

Quoting spacecadet (Reply 15):

Best reply on here so far. It was like reading a description of myself. Some one needs to design a small curved type of window shade made from a dark material which could be placed up to the bulkhead and window, it would cover just your head and shoulders, and window area.  
 
smokeybandit
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 7:15 pm

I'd venture a guess that the large majority would want the windows just for sanity's sake. Otherwise it'd be like being on a train/subway that's in a tunnel for 2-3-4-n hours.
 
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NYPECO
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 7:30 pm

Don't give them ideas   Being able to look out the window is the best part about flying.
 
rta
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 7:43 pm

Quoting cloudboy (Reply 23):
Unfortunately by virtue of my recent flights, it seems most people close the windows. As in, well over 3/4 of them if not more. First class is almost always a cave any time of day.

I get that for the people who don't like flying anyways and just want to completely trance themselves out. But why so many aviation enthusiasts, including frequent flyers, choose to is beyond me. Why not just stay at home?

At this point there's really no good way to give a good figure. I can assert that on my most recent flights, at least half of the windows were open, but someone else will say something different. The only thing I can say is that window blinds give the option to keep the window closed, but not having a window doesn't give the option to see outside. I feel like sitting in an aircraft with only 30% of the windows open is a completely different experience than sitting in an aircraft with no windows at all.

Anyway, I doubt windowless passenger planes will ever come to fruition for the reasons (mostly safety) that were already described in this thread. I imagine a lot of the people who are advocating for the removal of the windows would be crying wolf when they feel too claustrophobic from sitting in quite literally, "a tube" for many hours. The only benefit to sitting in the inner seat near a wall is to see out the window. Remove the window and everyone will want the aisle. Now we've just created another problem to complain about..
 
LSZH34
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 7:45 pm

Quoting 1g (Reply 20):

Huh?
 
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ER757
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 9:26 pm

Quoting spacecadet (Reply 15):

+1 - my feelings exactly.

As the the question posed by the OP - I din't think windowless planes are in the foreseeable future
 
Marcus
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 9:36 pm

My brother is a nervous flyer, he will not get on a plane if he can't have the window seat, or at least the one right next to a window....he would never fly on a windowless plane and I am sure he is not the only one in the world.
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allrite
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 10:21 pm

Oh not this thread again...

Quoting Marcus (Reply 30):
My brother is a nervous flyer, he will not get on a plane if he can't have the window seat, or at least the one right next to a window....he would never fly on a windowless plane and I am sure he is not the only one in the world.

  

I hate not being able to look out the window. Utterly spoils my flights, especially during turbulence. The world is a fascinating place. I'd rather see it than watch TV.
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BiggerJetsPlz
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 10:28 pm

Quoting 1g (Reply 20):
Really there's only an appeal on take-off and landing

I need to post pics of my flight from Venice to Barcelona on a Swiss RJ-100 in February. The views of the snowy Alps at 36,000 feet were breathtaking with the high wing out of the way.
 
MrBuzzcut
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 11:04 pm

Put me in the camp of people that would like windows to remain. I've done both (commercial airlines and C-17 flights) and believe me, having some natural light and a window to look out of makes the flight much more tolerable IMO.

Not knocking the C-17 mind you, it is a fine aircraft, but not being able to look out for 4.5-5 hours sucks, even if you can get up and walk all over the place (my rides were on one with maybe 2 pallets of cargo and 20-25 pax, so plenty of space to walk around).
 
afcjets
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 11:16 pm

It is hard for me to take this idea seriously, I cannot imagine how much smaller and tighter a plane without windows would feel. I would think this would exacerbate the number of psychotic episodes inflight we see on the news.
 
aklrno
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 11:25 pm

Quoting exFWAOONW (Reply 6):
Take away the windows, and you might as well be strapped down naked and drugged while flying.

I've been on worse flights.
 
Max Q
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Fri Sep 25, 2015 11:31 pm

Quoting exFWAOONW (Reply 6):
Take away the windows, and you might as well be strapped down naked and drugged while flying.

I think that's Ryanair, or is this something you'd like ?  Wow!
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


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notaxonrotax
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Sat Sep 26, 2015 12:12 am

Quoting mikesbucky (Reply 14):
I want them, but it seems from the other thread that most could care less.

So they cared about not having windows?

Quoting MrBuzzcut (Reply 33):
not being able to look out for 4.5-5 hours sucks, even if you can get up and walk all over the place (my rides were on one with maybe 2 pallets of cargo and 20-25 pax, so plenty of space to walk around).

At least you could walk around...that is a bit of a bonus.
No sign of a bar, by any chance?

It is my understanding that they would display the outside world on screens (FPD´s) mounted on the inside.......and I mean real time footage.
You know, you save big $$ on the construction of the aircraft, but you dash out a bit more dough with kitting the plane out rather fancily. I guess you could set up the brightness and all that to avoid the ever "I want to sleep in the darkest cabin possible VS. I want to look outside" discussion.

I would fly that, personally!!

As to emergencies, I agree a few real windows in the emergency exits are enough to assess the outside situation.

Quoting scbriml (Reply 16):
Now you're talking. Where do I sign up?

If only you could sign up to be the only guy in a female "coach", like they have on Indian trains!


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Planesmart
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Sat Sep 26, 2015 2:02 am

No window, and instead of possibly extracting a premium for window seats, or at least compensating for the inconvenience of getting out, you would be looking at a discount.

Aircraft don't need windows. Personal IFE could display outside shots, and in the event of an emergency, use file footage.
 
nm2582
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Sat Sep 26, 2015 2:18 am

All things considered, it's surprising that one of the ultra-low-cost carriers hasn't requested this already. The weight savings would probably result in a bit more revenue per flight, and there would be less maintenance/cleaning needed. I wonder if it would make the cabin any quieter.

I'm not a fan of the idea at all but I'm surprised it hasn't already happened.
 
birdbrainz
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Sat Sep 26, 2015 2:38 am

Quoting exFWAOONW (Reply 6):
Take away the windows, and you might as well be strapped down naked and drugged while flying.

don't get too enthusiastic. People will take you up on it.

Looking back, I always thought having a private jet would be a gilded cage, but after experiencing enough delays, cancellations, cranky pax, and draconian flight crews, I might be coming around. Nothing too fancy. Maybe a Citation Sovereign, or even an CJ3 or Phenom 300.
A good landing is one you can walk away from. A great landing is if the aircraft can be flown again.
 
CXfirst
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Sat Sep 26, 2015 2:39 am

As long as aircraft are designed in a similar way as today, I don't think we'll see windows disappear. The weight savings and other possible benefits aren't good enough in my opinion.

Now, if we have a radical new design, which makes incorporating windows more difficult, then yes, I believe we'll see windowless planes. However, that is still a while away.

-CXfirst
 
Max Q
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Sat Sep 26, 2015 3:07 am

Not going to happen, no matter how much some people don't like to look out !
The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.


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IPFreely
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Sat Sep 26, 2015 5:03 am

Quoting Planesmart (Reply 38):
Aircraft don't need windows. Personal IFE could display outside shots, and in the event of an emergency, use file footage.

Exactly. A windowless fuselage saves money, weight, and maintenance. A LCD screen placed where the window would normally be can show a video feed from cameras on the outside of the airplane so people can identify landmarks. If it's dark or cloudy, file footage from daylight flights can be shown. It's just a matter of time before this happens.

And for a few special flights, the crew could program the video feed to slowly rotate 180 degress, making the passengers feel the pilot is doing loops all the way to their destination. Good times.
 
L0VE2FLY
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Sat Sep 26, 2015 9:54 am

Quoting SJCMSP (Reply 5):
When I look at out the window I always think about how in all of human history, so few have gotten to view the Earth from that vantage point. It's odd to me that more don't appreciate that.

Except for nervous flyers, those who don't appreciate such amazing views are stupid, plain and simple! My favorite Jimmy Fallon Thank You Note: Thank you airplane window shades for being the best way to ignore man's greatest invention!      
 
RickNRoll
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Sat Sep 26, 2015 10:09 am

They could replace the windows with LCD screens showing what the outside looks like from a camera.
 
by738
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Sat Sep 26, 2015 10:19 am

Im not sure an informal straw poll in a.net is a good representation of the general publics view on windows. Id be vvverry surprised if that was worldwide consensus.
 
ZaphodHarkonnen
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Sat Sep 26, 2015 12:12 pm

At first I was going to say you'd want to at least have LCD screens so people don't get completely disconnected and possible motion sickness.

But there are some issues with this point of view.
* People got motion sickness even when basically everyone got a view out the window
* People do not get motion sickness in turbulence when all the shades happen to be down as it's night or something
* The LCD panel would have to be very tough, maintenance free, and high res enough so its cost would be quite high
* You may be able to get much of the window feel from strategically placing cameras on the aircraft and then allowing people to select the view they wish through on demand media systems. Though that will be restricted to carriers that have such seat back items equipped. You aren't going to see it on short haul.

So after thinking it through and reading the thread I changed my opinion to maybe such an aircraft should be explored. And I'm someone that loves getting the window seat even on hour long hops.
 
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TheRedBaron
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Sat Sep 26, 2015 1:59 pm

Quoting 32andBelow (Reply 8):
You would need windows in an emergency. You need to see what is going on outside the aircraft during an evacuation.

On the other thread some said that 99% of the time on long haul trips the views are boring, and also more than 99% of flights land safely so the majority don't need them for emergency, so... they are not needed we can have windowless aircraft because crashes are very rare...  
Quoting NYPECO (Reply 26):
Don't give them ideas   Being able to look out the window is the best part about flying.

That is the only good thing left of the flying experience....just look at the "food"....yikes!

Quoting allrite (Reply 31):
Oh not this thread again...

It was this, or the never ending saga of the failed A380.

Quoting Max Q (Reply 42):
Not going to happen, no matter how much some people don't like to look out !

Agree !!! I am on the lets look outside camp...

Quoting ZaphodHarkonnen (Reply 47):
People do not get motion sickness in turbulence when all the shades happen to be down as it's night or something



In my experience people get sick from turbulence, windows or not, I like seeing the wing wobble when in turbulence, also while passing clouds... some people get scared.

Most people would be surprised at the high amount of people who are flying with Tafil or some drug to pass out... so the drugged and naked comment is halfway there!!!!

TRB
The best seat in a Plane is the Jumpseat.
 
r2rho
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RE: Are Windowless Passenger Aircraft The Future?

Sat Sep 26, 2015 3:09 pm

I do not like the idea as I am one of those rare people who like to to look out at the world below, but given the general trend, I can definitely see this happening:
- pax don't look outside anymore, they are hypnotized by whatever is running on the screen in front of them
- by the time the next all-new aircraft is designed, a sufficient part of the population will have grown up with smartphones, and thus prefer a virtual world on a screen to the real one
- most pax close the shades on long-hauls, and for those who don't, FA's frequently force you to close them anyway
- there are great structural weight savings to achieve by eliminating windows

In the race to the bottom that aviation is in, I see it as a very plausible next step...

Quoting rta (Reply 27):
The only benefit to sitting in the inner seat near a wall is to see out the window. Remove the window and everyone will want the aisle. Now we've just created another problem to complain about..

Introduce an extra fee for being able to select an aisle seat. Problem solved.

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