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By Robert Johnson and Geoffrey Ingersoll
Getting heavy stuff to locations far away, without spending a ton of money on fuel, and without the need for a runway is a dream of military planners and corporations alike.
Enter, the Aeros blimp: It can land without a runway, deliver high-tech wind farming equipment, and carry incredible tonnage. The blimp would remove troops from roadways, relieve pressure on energy consumption, and put logistics in the sky, away from the enemy.
Aeros is producing multiple models of the hard-shelled Aeroscraft seen here, including one called the Pelican for military use that should be fielded in early 2013.
The largest so far measures nearly 800-feet long and will carry 500 tons. The company claims the next-generation blimps called Rigid Variable Buoyancy Air Vehicles are one of a kind. The technology is explained here (with diagrams).
All three AerosCraft variants are supposed to cruise at 100 knots at altitudes of up to 12,200 feet.
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Meet the AerosCraft. The 1st Rigid Variable Buoyancy Air Vehicle in the world.
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The AerosCraft uses a lightweight, yet incredibly strong interior frame to carry large loads for long distances at great altitudes.
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The AerosCraft could revolutionize wind farming by delivering large turbines to remote locations.
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Its ability to carry immense loads would also make it indispensable for the oil and gas industry.
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The interior of the AerosCraft really is vast and will operate much like an open-air loading dock.
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And of course the military would love to have a warehouse full of gear set down onto distant battlefields without the need for a runway.
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But the company is targeting the passenger market as well - this is the craft as seen over Tokyo.
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The company says future passengers will, 'Embark on the highest quality of travel and transport to any location around the world!'
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The ship will provide meeting rooms.
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AerosCraft12 of 12Next: Insane Perfectly Timed Photos
And offer some spectacular views.
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