What you are looking at is the latest creation that comes from Airbus and is known as the Bird of Prey. Airbus is the European multinational aerospace giant that is among the largest aerospace and defense companies in the world. Airbus says that it developed this concept plane with the aim of ‘motivating the next generation of aeronautical engineers, underscoring how they can make a difference by applying technologies researched at the company in hybrid-electric propulsion, active control systems and advanced composite structures.’
The design of Bird of Prey was first shown at the Royal International Air Tattoo that was held at RAF airfield in Gloucestershire, England. The Bird of Prey is a hybrid-electric, and turbo-propeller concept craft that Airbus believes could be used for regional transportation. The Bird of Prey design features old and the new. It has the hybrid-electric engine that is in line with the company’s aim of cutting aerospace industry emissions by 50% by 2050. It also features the oldest tool that inspired people to fly; a bird.
The distinctive tail and wing features of Bird of Prey, according to a press statement by Airbus, ‘would mimic those of a bird of prey’ similar to an osprey or a California condor. The tail and the wings would be split into prongs and will feature ‘feathers’ that could be controlled individually. Bird of Prey also features a ‘blended wing-to-fuselage joint that mirrors the graceful and aerodynamic arch of an eagle or falcon,” as per the company’s press release.
Martin Aston, a senior manager at Airbus, said in a press statement, ‘Our ‘Bird of Prey’ is designed to be an inspiration to young people and create a ‘wow’ factor that will help them consider an exciting career in the crucially-important aerospace sector. One of the priorities for the entire industry is how to make aviation more sustainable – making flying cleaner, greener and quieter than ever before. We know from our work on the A350 XWB passenger jet that through biomimicry, nature has some of the best lessons we can learn about design. Who can’t help but be inspired by such a creation?’