Monday, 24 May, 2010 Technology

World's Biggest Airship to Be Tested Later This Year


E-Green Technologies, a company that focuses on designing and manufacturing low-altitude, mid-altitude and high-altitude airships, has recently carried out the inflation trial of its Bullet 580. The company claims that its airship is the biggest in the world.

The inflation test took about 6 hours, with the engineers working on the process inside the Garrett Coliseum, Montgomery, Ala.

The airship is 235-foot long, having a diameter of 65 feet and is meant to transport cargos weighting up to 2,000 pounds at an altitude of up to 20,000 feet. It will be able to register a maximum speed of 80 mph.

The cargo is carried inside the outer envelope, which, though very thin (1/6th of an inch) is ten times tougher than steel. The airship is made using a new type of Kevlar, a material used to manufacture bulletproof vests. It makes use of engines running on algae fuel. These engines are installed on the fuselage.

It would be interesting to note that E-Green Technologies looks forward to build a fleet of such airships so that anyone could rent them for a price that may rang between GBP200,000 and GBP550,000 a month.

Engineers hope to carry out the first test flight of their Bullet 580 later this year. During the test flight the airship will transport a joint NASA and Old Dominion University agricultural and geophysical cargo that will be used to estimate moisture content in soil.

The Bullet 850 can be used for broadcast communications, missile defense warning, airspace/maritime surveillance and control, GPS, weather monitoring and more.

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