Could this aircraft replace the 737? Boeing Transonic Truss-Braced Wing explained

Boeing and NASA have emerged with an eye-catching new concept for a future commercial airliner, reports Mark Broadbent

Efforts to make aircraft leaner and cleaner mostly focus on tweaking aerodynamics or introducing newer engines for the proven ‘tube and wing’ configuration. However, greater scrutiny on environmental credentials is leading the aviation industry to investigate entirely new ways of doing things.

The Transonic Truss-Braced Wing model during SUGAR tests in 2016
The Transonic Truss-Braced Wing model during SUGAR tests in 2016 NASA

Airbus’s Bird of Prey concept, unveiled in 2019, was a striking example of biomimicry – a design taking inspiration from the natural world. Separately, Boeing/NASA and TU Delft in the Netherlands have explored a blended wing body combining a conventional aircraft with a flying wing.

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