Planes Ditch Windows, Add HD Screens by 2024
Back in August, Paris-based Technicon Design unveiled a radical new approach to designing passenger planes: simply lopping out all the windows and lining the aircraft with high-resolution video screens. Instead of peering through a tiny porthole at your surroundings, passengers can kick back and gaze at the wild blue yonder with 360-degree panoramas. Now a company called CPI (Center for Process Innovation), located in the United Kingdom, believes it can further that aeronautical concept and put it into production within 10 years. Think it’s too radical to happen by 2024? Check out CPI’s plans for the future of flying in the informational teaser below. RELATED: The Terrafugia Transition is the flying car of today
Of course, yanking out the only true visual connection a passenger has with the outside world is a bit spooky to some, but according to CPI, the theoretical savings of this setup are significant. With weight being a constant factor in any aircraft construction, designers believe that subtracting side-view windows from the equation will drastically cut weight and theoretically allow fuselages to be thinner and interior space to be larger with an end result of lower plane build costs, fuel bills and fuel consumption.
The key to the concept lies in CPI’s 150 dpi OLED (organic light-emitting diode) high definition displays mounted in plastic and embedded into the fuselage’s lining panels. The lightweight and thin display sections would give passengers real-time views of the plane’s surroundings, access to in-flight entertainment, and could potentially be rigged to track head movement and adjust views accordingly. Conversely, the system can be used as ambient lighting when not transmitting images.
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Rough CPI estimates suggest the screens could provide around 20,000 hours of service before needing replacement. Stumbling blocks do exist however; large OLED screens are expensive to manufacture and would need to be flexible enough for use in the curved fuselage.
Though if the company makes it happen, the weight savings could add up. CPI estimates that for every one percent reduction in weight, the aircraft will save approximately 0.75 percent in fuel consumption.
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