Canadian Consulting Engineer

Are airships in the future for Canada’s North?

According to the Winnipeg Free Press, the team of Barry Prentice of the University of Manitoba and his associate Dale George are hoping to develop an airship to transport everything from food to construction supplies to remote First Nations...

January 17, 2012   Canadian Consulting Engineer

According to the Winnipeg Free Press, the team of Barry Prentice of the University of Manitoba and his associate Dale George are hoping to develop an airship to transport everything from food to construction supplies to remote First Nations reserves in the province.

Warm weather has recently delayed the construction of winter ice roads in Manitoba, making it difficult for far-flung communities to get supplies.

In December, Prentice and George unveiled a 24-metre long airship that they will test this spring by flying it carrying a symbolic 67-kilogram load. A critical question in their project is whether the ships can sustain harsh winter conditions.

Prentice estimates that three airships could service northern communities in the province. The cost would be a hangar and $100 million.

A company called Hybrid Air Vehicles in the U.K. is developing “heavy lift” Hybrid Air Vehicles that can carry up to 1,000 tons. They promote them as having low carbon emissions and not requiring a runway.

To view a video of a heavy lift airship taking off, click here.

http://www.hybridairvehicles.com/Default.aspx


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