Airbus has unveiled a “blended-wing body” scale model technological demonstrator known as Maveric or “model aircraft for validation and experimentation of robust innovative controls” at the Singapore Airshow 2020.
Airbus said that the demonstrator, which measures 2 m long and 3.2 m wide, features a “disruptive aircraft design” and has the potential to reduce fuel consumption by up to 20% compared to current single-aisle jet passenger aircraft. The company added that the blended-wing body configuration also opens up possibilities for new propulsion systems.
Airbus told Jane’s that while Maveric is principally a demonstrator for commercial aerospace, the design could influence “future military transport aircraft”. An official said that it might be possible that the design could move to initial production within 10 years.
According to Airbus, the Maveric project was launched in 2017, with the demonstrator aircraft taking its first remote-controlled flight in June 2019. Initial testing is scheduled to conclude in the second quarter of 2020. Following that, Airbus will consider building a larger scale aircraft, although proposed details have not yet been finalised, the company said.
Jean-Brice Dumont, the executive vice-president of Engineering Airbus, said, “Airbus is leveraging emerging technologies to pioneer the future of flight. By testing disruptive aircraft configurations, Airbus is able to evaluate their potential as viable future products.”
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