Can you imagine that the future of aviation could be passengers in planes with no pilots! European multinational aerospace corporation Airbus has announced that they have the technology for this. They are currently trying to persuade regulators and passengers of this idea.
Airbus chief salesman Christian Scherer has said “This is not a matter of technology – it’s a matter of interaction with the regulators, the perception in the traveling public. When can we introduce it in large commercial aircraft? That is a matter we are discussing with regulators and customers, but technology-wise, we don’t see a hurdle.”
As for now, the primary purpose for this is military related while some propose this could be used for commercial flights. This will probably be far in the future as safety is still a huge concern to passengers.
Is It A Good Idea?
In case you are already worrying about your future trips, it might be news that most flights are on autopilot. Yes, the pilots take off the plane, reach cruising altitude, and then switch on autopilot. Sometimes they chit chat, eat snacks, or even nap.
However, pilots are important for instances such as turbulence and emergency landings. As of now there is no information regarding how Airbus plans to go about such situations.
Airbus is not alone in their plans for a pilotless future. In fact, earlier this year Boeing completed its first pilotless test in Virginia. It seems that this technology is being explored by the dominant market players.
Unfortunately these companies have their work cut out for them as passenger fears are the biggest hurdles. A study conducted by Swiss investment bank UBS just last year found that almost two thirds of passengers would be ‘unlikely to fly in a pilotless plane’. Even with just one pilot on board, more than half of passengers would not want to board the plane.
Count me in on this statistic. With my fear of flying the future of pilotless jets seems more like a nightmare than a dream.