Airbus Unveils "Jet of the Future"

Airframer offers a glimpse of what air travel could be like in 2050.

Imagine yourself in an airliner 40 years from now. What does it look like? According to Airbus’ lofty prediction, which will likely cause more than a few retrospective chuckles down the road, passengers flying in 2050 should be able to play a game of virtual golf, breathe in antioxidant-enriched air and watch the sky take shape through the cabin’s translucent airframe, all while in flight.

A year after Airbus outlined its idea of a futuristic airliner – an airplane with greater speed and eco-friendly technology – the company is giving prospective passengers a view from the inside. And that view is a grand one.

Dubbed the Airbus Concept Cabin, the design includes a spacious interior encased in a smart cabin wall membrane that can become transparent, allowing passengers to take in panoramic sky views in-flight. The airplane’s lightweight bionic structure, made to mirror the efficiencies of bird flight, would provide strength and allow for air temperature control where needed.

In place of traditional class seating, the cabin offers separate zones uniquely tailored to meet the different needs of all passengers, be they business travelers, socialites, techies or relaxation seekers. Need a place to game or hold a business meeting? No problem. Looking to enjoy some mood lighting or aromatherapy? The Concept Cabin has you covered.

In spite of its extensive amenities, the futuristic airplane would boast a 100 percent recyclable cabin that utilizes passenger body heat to power a variety of its features.

Airbus admits that, in reality, many of the technologies the company is working to develop “may not be seen in the exact manner as in the Airbus Concept Plane and Cabin.” Nonetheless, the company’s idea is likely to spark a whimsical chord, or a good laugh, among many of today's frequent airline passengers.

For now, I think we’d all be happy to settle for a few extra inches of legroom.