A Portugal-based company is developing what it calls a “safe and environmentally friendly” airship designed to transport not only cargo, but people.
Over the last five years, Nortavia-Transportes Aereos built a 1/10 scale prototype, six meters long, three meters high and three meters wide, named after the Earth Goddess, GAYA.
Nortavia created a Research & Development team, which developed its own concept of an airship. By contrast to the first airship built in the last century, the new generation airship uses helium, a non-flammable gas, inert and lighter than air, making it extremely safe, according to company officials. The airship is made up of several modules filled in with helium, which allow it to stay in the air long enough to serve its purpose and land in safety, even in the case of a gas leak, company officials said.
The propulsion system chosen to be used on the Nortavia airship emits minimal CO2, making it environmentally friendly, officials add. The Nortavia airship combines a generator running on bio-fuel and photovoltaic cells. These generate energy which, in turn, powers the vector electric motors responsible for navigation.
The project’s debut is slated for December in Seattle.