Who needs windows on aircraft when you can have giant video screens!
Engineering and design have, until now, restricted what air passengers can see out of their windows. But Spike Aerospace is trying to change all that.
The Boston-based aircraft manufacturer is building the supersonic Spike S-512, which it claims fly from New York to London in three to four hours instead of the current seven or so.
However, one crucial element of the design is that the aircraft will not have any windows at all.
The jet, scheduled to be operational by 2018, will instead have the interior wall covered with a thin digital screen which will display the view outside the plane with the help of cameras mounted all over the jet.
These cameras construct panoramic images of the view it captures, and render it on the digital screen inside the cabin.
And, there’s more. Flyers will also be able to dim their particular part of the screen, or change it to one of the many images pre-loaded in the system.
Don’t expect this on the next wide-bodied jet just yet, Spike Aerospace is only in the business of building 12-18 passenger capacity Supersonic aircraft, targeted at business professionals who travel across the globe frequently.
Here is a short promo clip:
Also, in addition to creating a different customer experience inside the flight, the main other reason for replacing traditional windows with digital screens is to do with the aerodynamics of the flight.
The company says:
“It has long been known that the windows cause significant challenges in designing and constructing an aircraft fuselage. They require addition structural support, add to the parts count and add weight to the aircraft.
“With the micro-cameras and flat displays now available, Spike Aerospace can eliminate the structural issues with windows and reduce the aircraft weight. In addition, the very smooth exterior skin will reduce the drag normally caused by having windows.”
Karthick was general manager for Tnooz in Asia until September 2014.