KLM helps to finance the Flying-V plane, where passengers fly in the wings

(CNN) – The development of a V-shaped, fuel-efficient aircraft design known as the Flying-V, is boosted by the announcement that Dutch citizen KLM Royal Dutch Airlines will help finance it.

The purpose of improving the sustainability of air traffic was Flying-V developed by Justus Benad, then a student at Technical University of Berlin, and developed by researchers at Delft University of Technology in the Netherlands, also known as TU Delft

The futuristic the design incorporates the passenger cabin, fuel tanks and cargo into the wings.

  The passenger cabin, fuel tanks and load carrier are all integrated into the aircraft's wings in the Flying-V design.

The passenger cabin, fuel tanks and load carrier are all incorporated in the aircraft's wings in the Flying-V design.

Edwin Wallet, OSO Studio

It is claimed that the aircraft will use 20% less fuel than the Airbus A350-900 while carrying a corresponding number of passengers – Flying-V seats 314, while Airbus A350 seats between 300 and 350. The design also mirrors the A350's 65 meter long wing panel so that it can use existing airport infrastructure.

"In recent years, KLM has developed as a pioneer in sustainability in the airline industry," says Pieter Elbers, CEO and President of KLM, in a statement. "We are proud of our progressive relationship with TU Delft, which is well connected to KLM's strategy and serves as an important milestone for us on the way to upscaling sustainable aviation. "

TU Delft Project manager Roelof Vos said that such innovation was necessary as a step for greater efficiency, while the technology still was developed to create large-scale electric aircraft.

"Aviation contributes about 2.5% of global CO2 emissions, and industry continues to grow, so we really need to look at more sustainable aircraft," he told CNN.

"We can't just electrify the entire fleet, as electrified aircraft get too heavy, and you can't fly people over the Atlantic on electric aircraft – not now, not in 30 years," said Vos. "So we have to come up with new technology that reduces fuel combustion in another way.

"We've been flying these pipelines and airplanes for decades now, but it looks like the configuration is now a plateau in terms of energy efficiency," he said. realizes a certain synergy between the hull and the wing. The fuselage actively contributes to lifting the aircraft, creating less aerodynamic drag. "

The aircraft's increased fuel efficiency is largely a result of its aerodynamic design, Vos explains. although the reduced weight also contributes

The researchers hope to fly a scale model in September, says Vos, while a summary of the new cabin design will be open to the public at Amsterdam's Schiphol airport in October as part of KLM's 100th anniversary celebrations. The finished aircraft is expected to enter the service between 2040 and 2050.

The design still requires rigorous testing, says Vos to CNN. "We have done numerical testing and preliminary wind tunnel tests, but we need to do much more testing in wind tunnels – high speed and low speed – to demonstrate that this aircraft is effective as we think."

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