Elon Musk Wants Vertical Takeoff For Commercial Airplanes

Business / Science

Elon Musk appeared on The Colbert Report to talk about the variety of projects he has going on including Tesla and SpaceX. During that interview Elon mentions vertical take off of commercial airplanes. Here’s what he said courtesy of Business Insider, the video follows after the break.

Business Insider transcription

Aircraft should be vertical takeoff and landing. Kind of like a Harrier, except that it’s better to move the fan than it is to duct the air. I think the Harrier’s a great plane, but I think there’s a real opportunity to have a vertical take-off and landing supersonic jet.  You’d use an electric motor to drive a fan. Traditional jet aircraft are mostly fan driven — like when you see a high-bypass jet engine on a triple-7, it looks huge. That’s because most of the propulsion is really coming from the fan. So there’s some value to having ducts, but it’s actually more efficient to have an open fan if you just care about efficiency per mile. But you can go faster if you have a ducted situation.

We have made no secret for our appreciation of Tesla, SpaceX and Elon Musk here on Techaeris and his brilliance continues to impress. While many might find his ideas half baked or simply out of reach, it’s people like him who continually push innovation. Imagine if we all just settled for what we already have, we wouldn’t be where we are. Of course there are pros and cons to everything, we adapt to that. The comparisons have been made but I have to restate it. Elon Musk is the real life Tony Stark.  I wonder if he has an MK I sitting somewhere in his cliff side home? What do you think of Elon Musk’s vertical take off ambitions? Let us know in the comments below or on Google+, Facebook and Twitter.

  Source: Business Insider

Featured image courtesy Forbes.

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