Ohio Airships‘ hybrid Dynalifter is a massive hybrid airship that could transform how packages are transported around the world by reducing freight costs and extending the reach of delivery services to less accessible regions. The idea is the brainchild of Robert Rist who, along with his colleague Brian Martin, believe the Dynalifter could herald a “FedEx-like shipping revolution”. The product of 14 years of development, the 120-foot-long, pickle-shaped aircraft is held aloft by multiple balloon-like cells filled with helium
The Dynalifter is also equipped with wings that boast propellers which provide about half its lift. But it is the unique interior framework, which is modeled after cable-stayed bridge construction, that is the key to enabling future versions of the aircraft to lift concentrated loads of up to 160 tons without collapsing.
While jet aircrafts are faster, the Dynalifter will cater to the market that relies on trains and trucks. The airship would consume less fuel and cut costs by providing more space for large, bulky loads. However, if needed, the Dynalifter is also capable of crossing oceans and would do so at speeds faster than most ships. And unlike trains and trucks, the aircraft would not require any form of transportation infrastructure.
The prototype has been successfully tested and now Ohio Airships is looking for investors and manufacturers to supply $40 million to create a full size, fully operational Dynalifter. Here’s hoping they get the funding.