Airbus proposes 'removable cabin pod' for planes to reduce boarding times

The new patent would be of particular help to disabled passengers

Will Grice
Saturday 28 November 2015 18:02
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You know the deal at airports – you queue for an age at check-in, wait around for hours, wasting money in bars and chain stores with overinflated prices, before a mad dash to the gate... only be met with more queing to get on board.

But what if that whole process could be sped up and made pain free?

Airbus thinks it has the answer with a proposal made in a recent patent.

The patent, which was proposed in February but granted recently, would allow for the plane's cabin to be detatched and suspended at the gate via a series of crane-like arms.

This would mean passengers would be able to climb aboard the plane without having to actually travel any further than the boarding gate, as the cabin would be sitting flush with the floor of the gate's entrance.

Such a patent would make boarding planes significantly easier for disabled passengers as they would no longer need assistance to get up any steps. It would also allow for the mechanical side of the plane to be checked over while passengers are boarding, allowing for fuels and repairs to happen while passengers settle down.

Currently if a plane is in need of refueling, its passengers would need to be seated or waiting in the terminal while the plane is tended to. This new patent would significantly cut boarding times.

"Transfer of passengers, luggage or freight can thus be accomplished optimally, and in particular without using a staircase or a lift or elevator," says the patent.

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