the two-pronged 'flying-V' airplane is KLM and TU delft's vision for sustainable aviation

the two-pronged 'flying-V' airplane is KLM and TU delft's vision for sustainable aviation

this two-pronged innovative flight concept coined the ‘flying-V’ embraces an entirely different approach to aircraft design, and anticipates a future for sustainable long-distance flight. dutch airliner KLM will be contributing towards the research of the aerospace engineering team at delft university of technology (TU delft) to make this highly energy-efficient long-distance airplane a reality. its aerodynamic shape and reduced weight will allow it to use 20% less fuel than today’s most advanced aircraft — the airbus A350. furthermore, the spectacular, V-shaped design — which takes its name from the gibson guitar model — will accommodate the passenger cabin, the cargo hold and the fuel tanks within its wings.

all visualizations by edwin wallet, studio OSO



the aircraft was originally conceptualized by TU berlin student justus benad during his thesis project as a potential aircraft design for the future. despite its unusual shape, the aircraft can be compared to the airbus A350 — although not as long, ‘flying-V’ does have the same wingspan, enabling it to use existing infrastructure at airports, such as gates and runways. furthermore, ‘flying-V’ would be able to carry the same number of passengers — 314 in the standard configuration — and the same volume of cargo, 160m3.



internally, from the design of the seats and bathrooms, everything has to be as lightweight as possible in order to maximize the efficiency gain the new aircraft shape provides. ‘flying-V’ is propelled by the most fuel-efficient turbofan engines that currently exist. while in its present design, it still flies on kerosene, it can easily be adapted to make use of innovations in the propulsion system, like using electrically-boosted turbofans.



‘we are incredibly pleased to be able to cooperate with our trusted partner KLM on our combined mission to make aviation more sustainable,’ comments professor henri werij, dean of the faculty of aerospace engineering at TU delft. ‘radically new and highly energy-efficient aircraft designs such as the flying-V are important in this respect, as are new forms of propulsion. our ultimate aim is one of emission free flight. our cooperation with KLM offers a tremendous opportunity to bring about real change.’



‘in recent years, KLM has developed as a pioneer in sustainability within the airline industry,’ explains KLM president & CEO pieter elbers. ‘the development of aviation has given the world a great deal, offering us an opportunity to connect people. this privilege is paired with a huge responsibility for our planet. KLM takes this very seriously and has therefore been investing in sustainability at different levels for many years, enabling it to develop a broad spectrum of sustainability initiatives. we are proud of our progressive cooperative relationship with TU delft, which ties in well with KLM’s strategy and serves as an important milestone for us on the road to scaling-up sustainable aviation.’

  • Love this, I also like the idea that the passengers seating could be arranged that they get a view of where they are going with an almost front facing view similar to that of the pilots.

    Danny Molt says:
  • I hope to live to see it.


    Jimmy Xi says:
  • Hope the mid rear engine design will reduce the noise.

    Selucus says:
  • already seen concept, and not as clever as (supposed) 797 blended wing design, dating back 2006

    jacopo says:
  • beautiful bird, interesting why they are not showing any interior renderings . . . may assume the only one to enjoy it might be the pilots, the fuel and the cargo –
    not the passengers, definitely not the attending crew

    yuval geni says:

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