Watch the sky for Flying Whales


Click to enlarge

❝ France has entered the global race to develop a viable cargo airship with a 500-foot blimp designed to lift lumber from deep woodland.

Flying Whales is joining a contest that includes defense giant Lockheed Martin Corp. and a clutch of smaller players. What’s different about the latest project is the combined benefit of the blimp being able to lift an industry-leading 60 tons, but without any requirement for mooring pylons…

❝ “There have been a lot of blimp projects over time and there have been many failures,” Flying Whales founder and Chief Executive Officer Sebastien Bougon said in an interview. “We have a solid base. The wood market alone justifies our investments, and we’ve got low-risk prospects beyond.”

The Flying Whale will be twice as long as a Boeing 747 jumbo jet and have a rigid structure with individual pockets of helium, technically making it an airship rather than a blimp, which relies solely on internal gas pressure. It will be powered by small diesel or electric engines but require minimal power.

I love airships. Being an old fart, I remember the sight of some pretty big navy dirigibles overhead during WW2. Truly impressive.

I want a ride!