We are merely scratching the surface of what we can accomplish with today’s technology. In recent years technology of all kinds has made monumental advancements and it won’t be long before these advancements transform the world of aviation as we know it. Below are just a few of the possible trends in aviation that we feel pilots can look forward to in the future. Whether that future is today, tomorrow or even ten years from now, there is the possibility for a lot to change.
Voice Command: Voice control software has become so advanced in the last year that it has been incorporated into almost everything from entertainment, cars, Smartphone’s, and even a smart home system that lets you talk to your house. There is no reason to believe that it won’t, at some point find its way into the cockpit. There could come a time when all you have to do to land your aeroplane, is ask.
Fully Automated Airports: If we can accept that an aeroplane will someday be able to land itself when you ask it to, then it shouldn’t come as too much of a surprise when we say that airports will likely go through a similar transformation. Airports run completely by machines – carrying cargo, scheduling, and all of those other little tasks taken care of by human crews. Kind of sounds like the beginning of a ‘Terminator’ film, doesn’t it?…
Avionics: Say goodbye to the instrument panel. With the popularity of wearable electronics soaring in recent years, it is not so farfetched to think that some of these products could be applied to aviation. Pilots using Google Glass to synch with the aircraft or automatically update themselves with weather changes. It was only last week we speculated on the future of HUDs. The Skylens is expected to be in service this year.
Clean energy: Looking after the environment has finally become a priority (about time). As people become more active in being “green” airlines are investing more and more into finding alternative fuels. Solar powered wings? Lithium-polymer batteries? Hydrogen power? It is surely only a matter of time before a breakthrough in this technology is reached.
Flying cars: It wasn’t that long ago that we laughed at the idea of a flying car – and if we’re honest, we’re still laughing. Companies such as Terrafugia and PAL-V may appear dubious and farfetched now, but given the speed at which technology is advancing, the “road-able aircraft” could become a reality.
Technology breakthroughs: Unmanned aircraft, ultra-lightweight aircraft, blended wing-bodies, even quiet supersonic commercial travel. NASA is researching all of these concepts and a breakthrough would likely completely reinvent aviation as we know it.
Reduced cost: The Part-23 rewrite is giving designers the freedom to create products that offer enhanced safety and at the same time, are far more cost-effective. Aeroplanes and avionics that cost less to produce and less to purchase will secure the future of aviation.
What are your thoughts on the future of aviation? Share them with us in the comments below!