First, let’s just get this out of the way: it is not, I repeat not, a blimp. Whew! Okay. . . Turtle Airships (a Spanish company that seems to have some intense aversion to the word “blimp”) is working on an airship that will make the journey from NYC to Paris, powered predominantly by the sun.
The top half of the
blimp airship will be covered in solar panels that will store energy in batteries and use it to power four electric motors. The craft will also have a biodiesel engine as a back-up so the ship can fly in bad weather and at night. It will be able to take off vertically, land on ground or in water, and travel at around 40 miles per hour in ideal weather (making for a very long Transatlantic journey).
The airship is having a bit of difficulty getting off the ground at this point though, due to lack of funds. Turtle Airships is working on a prototype and hoping that as buzz for the project increases, so will the financing. Once the cash comes in, they say they’re ready for lift-off.
Until then, you can indulge your Goodyear fantasies with Airship Ventures, which offers Zeppelin flights from several California cities, ranging from $199 to $600 per person.