Not exactly a blimp, massive airship debuts at Moffett Field

Nov. 28, 2023
Next-generation aircraft will be the largest of its kind to float in the skies, offering humanitarian aid in hard-to-reach places, Emily Margaretten writes for Mountain View Voice.

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., - Reviving an early 20th-century ambition, an experimental airship debuted at Moffett Field this month, albeit for only a few minutes before technicians rolled the massive aircraft back inside its cloistered hangar, Emily Margaretten writes for the Mountain View VoiceContinue reading original article.

The Military & Aerospace Electronics take:

28 November 2023- “The Pathfinder 1 proof of concept aircraft combines the best historical design, modern materials, and new, patented engineering and manufacturing techniques to create a next-generation airship that is safer, stronger, and more efficient than ever before,” LTA said on its website.

Google co-founder Sergey Brin backs LTA, which produced the lighter-than-air rigid airship. Unlike blimps, the Pathfinder aircraft has an internal structure made up of more than 10,000 carbon-fiber reinforced tubes plus 3,000 titanium hubs, which are covered by a Tedlar covering. Pathfinder 1 is filled with inert helium

"When we look up and ahead, we see a future where zero-emission airships can support and even speed up disaster response and relief efforts," LTA writes on its website. "If runways, roads, and ports are damaged, LTA’s airships can still deliver what communities need. If cellphone towers are knocked out, airships can hover and provide service."

Related: Flying Whales selects Honeywell generator for its hybrid airship

Related: Research in Flight and Auburn University continue development of the DATT MA 600 Electric Extended Range Airship

Related: UAVOS completes tests for UAV delivery for humanitarian relief

Jamie Whitney, Senior Editor
Military + Aerospace Electronics

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