Future of flying

Future of flying

From hot air balloons to planes powered by body heat - what's next?

Airbus - a company which makes aeroplanes - have made a video showing what they think aeroplanes will look like in the future. Have a look!

Wow. Can you imagine being on a plane where the cabin lights are powered by body heat? Or a plane with a huge swimming pool on board?

If you'd asked somebody 40 years ago about a double-decker plane which can carry 800 people, they'd have thought you were crazy. Now we have double-decker planes flying above us every day.

It's taken humans a long time to learn how to fly. Have a look at these early inventions.

Hot air balloons

Joseph Michel and Jacques Etienne Montgolfier invented the first hot air balloon, in 1783. Their first passengers were a sheep, rooster and duck!

First hot air balloon

The first successful hot air balloon

Gliders

George Cayley wanted to invent a way for man to fly like a bird. He was the first person to properly investigate the four forces necessary for flight - weight, lift, drag and thrust.  George's first idea was a glider.

Replical George Cayley glider (c) Nigel Coates

A model of George Cayley's glider (c) Nigel Coates

Aeroplanes

Orville and Wilbur Wright were the first people build and fly a plane with an engine. The Wright brothers realised that as well as an engine, the pilot needed to be able to control the plane reliably - otherwise, they couldn't steer properly! Orville was the first to fly the plane - it travelled 36 metres. Although that's not a lot now, it was a huge achievement in 1903. Have a look at the Wright brothers' first ever flight:

Aeroplanes have changed a lot since 1903. What will they be like in 2050? Will Airbus be right about the aeroplanes of the future? Or will aeroplanes be even stranger than we can imagine?

Find out more about Airbus's vision of the future of aeroplanes and the Airbus A380 at the Daily What News.

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