The (TU Delft) Delft University of Technology and KLM Royal Dutch Airlines have teamed up in order to provide more advanced and reliable aviation experience at the IATA Annual General Meeting in Seoul. The Dutch airline will contribute towards research of TU Delft into an advanced and innovative flight concept named the “Flying-V”. The V-shaped airplane has an entirely different aircraft design. It is designed for a highly energy efficient long-distance airplane. A radial new airplane design puts passenger seats inside the plane’s wings. The plane also uses the most fuel-efficient turbofan engines that currently exist.
The aircraft’s V-shaped design will also integrate the cargo hold and the fuel tanks in the wings structure along with the passenger cabin. This entirely different futuristic shape will make the Flying V lighter and more aerodynamic. Its designer team has mentioned that the aircraft will use 20% less fuel than today’s most advanced aircraft, the Airbus A350. The Flying-V will seat 314 passengers similar to the advanced Airbus A350, while the Airbus A350 seats between 300 and 350. The design also mirrors the A350’s 65-meter (213 feet) wingspan to enable it for using existing airport infrastructure. CNN also reported that the complete plane is expected to enter service between 2040 and 2050.
The KLM has indicated that Flying V will also carry the similar cargo volume, 160m3. Although the plane is not as long as the A350, it does have the same wingspan. This will enable the Flying-V to use existing infrastructure at airports, such as gates and runways, without difficulty and the aircraft will also fit into the same hangar as the A350. The Flying-V will be smaller than the A350, giving it less aerodynamic resistance. The project leader at TU Delft, Dr. Roelof Vos said, “The Flying-V is smaller than the A350 and has less inflow surface area compared to the available amount of volume. The result is less resistance. That means the Flying-V needs less fuel for the same distance”.