A Singapore Company Creates Aircraft that Will Change the Way We Travel
Stunning images have revealed an incredible flying boat that soars above the water on a cushion of air at speeds of up to 106 knots / 196km/h.
The winged Airfish 8 can carry up to eight passengers and could revolutionise travel between thousands of islands in Indonesia, the Philippines, Polynesia and the Caribbean, among others.
The firm behind its creation is currently in the process of designing and building a larger craft, which could carry up to 50 people.
Fitted with the engine of a race car -- specifically a 7-litre V8 engine -- and resembling the look of a sleek seaplane, the Airfish 8 is in fact classified as a merchant ship.
Based in Singapore, the company behind it, Wigetworks, hopes to change the way people travel and offer a whole host of other uses with this innovative craft.
The AirFish 8 (AF8) is designed to be operated by two crew and can carry between 6-8 passengers.
Utilizing the Wing-In-Ground (WIG) effect, the craft essentially flies close to the water surface while supported by a field of high-pressure air beneath its wings and above the water surface. This creates the impression that it's simply gliding above a cushion of air. Travelling above the water surface also means there’s no hydrodynamic drag, making the craft much more fuel-efficient.
Using technology first started by the Russians in 1960, the Airfish 8 itself is based on a German prototype and is the world’s first to be registered as a merchant ship with the Singapore Registry of Shipping.
Take off and landing is relatively swift and effortless when the water is flat, but it can get a little rough when the waves are high. However, that only lasts for about 30-45 seconds, and once airborne, the ride would be smooth and easy regardless of the waves below.
It requires around 500m to takeoff or land and has a range of around 300 nautical miles (926km).
Source : DailyMail.co.uk | Forbes
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