The Airlander series is cleaner, quieter and more comfortable than a fixed-wing aircraft or rotorcraft and Hybrid Air Vehicles claims it will revolutionise the air transport experience for both passengers and the environment. Nigel Pittaway reports

Having repurchased its prototype hybrid aircraft from the United States Army, HAV brought it to the UK and modified it to Airlander 10 configuration
All images courtesy of Hybrid Air Vehicles unless stated otherwise

The Airlander combines features of an airship with new technologies, which according to its designer, Hybrid Air Vehicles (HAV), will make it quieter and significantly more environmentally friendly than alternative means of transporting passengers and freight – and at a competitive cost. A long-endurance air vehicle, its use-cases include mobility, travel, logistics and communications/surveillance missions.

HAV, a British firm, is promising at least a 75% reduction in emissions over comparable aircraft performing similar roles from the outset using ultra-efficient piston engines. This will increase to 90% soon after 2025 when a hybrid combustion/electric propulsion system can be offered. The company says its target is to achieve zero-emission flight, using electric propulsion alone, by 2030.

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