Airbus is inspired by the flight of geese to reduce fuel consumption.

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The flight of airliners in formation, as do wild geese, could save between 5% and 10% of fuel, according to Airbus, which announced on Wednesday the signing of an agreement with airlines and air traffic agencies to demonstrate the operational feasibility.

See also: Airbus continues with the development of the A321XLR, seeing it as immune to the drop in travel.

“Birds like wild geese fly in V-shaped formation to preserve their energy. Birds that are in the lead help those that follow with their position,” explained Jean-Brice Dumont, Airbus’ engineering director, at an International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) telematics conference.

Each aircraft engine produces in its wake a vortex that contains an upward airflow from which the following aircraft could benefit to reduce engine power and reduce consumption.

See also: Airbus tops Boeing on deliveries and avoids order cancellations while fighting for revenue.

In 2016, a test flight with an A350 flying three kilometers behind an A380 “showed an instantaneous saving of more than 10% in fuel consumption,” he explained.

However, the operational feasibility of this project, called “fello’ fly”, must be tested.

Airbus signed an agreement with the airlines Frenchbee and SAS Scandinavian Airlines, as well as with air traffic agencies (DSNA in France, Nats in the United Kingdom and Eurocontrol) to study how to organize flights in these formations of aircraft, says the European manufacturer in a statement.

“Likewise, Airbus will continue to work on technical solutions to assist the pilot to ensure that the aircraft remains positioned in total safety,” he adds.

Throughout the year, test flights with two A350s are expected to take place, says the manufacturer, who hopes to be able to put the system into service by the middle of the decade.

By InfoBae

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