Magnavem: The fusionpowered concept aircraft

Magnavem: The fusionpowered concept aircraft

Spanish designer Oscar Viñals developed a concept for a nuclear aircraft for up to 500 passengers that could reach supersonic speeds. Named Magnavem, from Latin Magna Avem (big bird), the model is very different from most of the planes you see every day. So far, no manufacturer has actually built it.

features

  • Capacity for up to 500 passengers
  • Top speed of Mach 1.5 (1.5 times the speed of sound) at 1,852 km/h
  • Up to 15.4 km altitude
  • Zero emission of pollutants
  • The landing approach is made with the engines turned off to save fuel and energy and be quieter.
  • Maneuvers are performed using steerable engine nozzles that move to propel the aircraft in the desired direction.
  • Below would be the batteries, hydrogen reservoirs, and the cargo and luggage area.
  • At the top, passengers would be divided into three seating classes over two floors: First, Business, and Economy Class.

motorization

  • The system would be powered by a hybrid hydrogen and electricity system.
  • Conventional engines would be replaced by plasma actuators that control airflow over the aircraft body, creating the necessary movement.
  • In total there would be four of these hybrid engines (hydrogen and electricity)

The author still believes that it is possible that this system is not only environmentally friendly, but also responsible for capturing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. This would be done by a compact nuclear fusion reactor.

This type of technology is already being developed by the North American company Lockheed Martin, one of the world’s major suppliers of military technology and aircraft.

At a speed of 890 km/h, two special hydrogenpowered ramjet engines would propel the aircraft to supersonic speeds.

This model has already been used in some aircraft, such as the SR71 Blackbird, a reconnaissance aircraft that reached a speed of 3,500 km/h, more than three times the speed of sound.

viability

The aircraft, which was first released in 2018, is still a concept and there is no forecast when flights will be launched. Its author adhered to several technologies not so far removed from our reality to idealize the model.

Viñals believes that we will better understand the properties of plasma and will master its use in the years to come.

That’s a big challenge, all the more so for an aircraft similar in size to the Airbus A380 and the Boeing 747, the largest passenger aircraft of our time.

However, tests can be made from concepts and technologies can be developed that are later used in other models, even if the original version does not leave the paper.

In conversation with UOLthe author believes that Magnavem’s technologies should soon become a reality.

Combining hydrogen and electrical energy in an aircraft engine to propel it through the skies should be feasible in the years to come. Magnavem could be equipped with these types of engines, in addition to the ramjet, to reach supersonic speeds … Who knows?
Oscar Vinals, designer at Magnavem

  • The Spaniard says he has already been approached by a US company and is a cofounder of a Chinese company that supplies aerospace products to different parts of the world.
  • However, this contact was not intended to build the model but to understand what type of technology the aircraft would require and how it would be applicable.
  • The idea to develop the model arose from the challenge of creating the most sustainable supersonic aircraft possible, using its body as the main control surface.
  • The aim was also to eliminate the use of wings or, as in the case of Magnavem, to use very small wings.

My interest in aircraft arose almost fifteen years ago as a personal challenge, trying to contribute my ideas to improve and enhance current aircraft.
Oscar Vinals

data sheet

Magnavem
Length: 70.4 meters
Height: 14.1 meters
Span (lateral distance): 76.4 meters
Seats: 500 in total, 42 in First Class, 98 in Executive and 360 in Economy
cruising speed: 1,852km/h
Autonomy: Up to 19,000 km
Maximum Takeoff Weight: 590 tons

Magnavem  Oscar Vinals  Oscar Vinals

Magnavem, concept of a supersonic aircraft for up to 500 passengers, powered by nuclear fusion

Image: Oscar Vinals Magnavem  Oscar Vinals  Oscar Vinals

Interior of Magnavem, supersonic aircraft for up to 500 passengers

Image: Oscar Vinals Magnavem  Oscar Vinals  Oscar Vinals

Magnavem, concept of a supersonic aircraft for up to 500 passengers, powered by nuclear fusion

Image: Oscar Vinals Magnavem  Oscar Vinals  Oscar Vinals

Magnavem, concept of a supersonic aircraft for up to 500 passengers, powered by nuclear fusion

Image: Oscar Vinals Magnavem  Oscar Vinals  Oscar Vinals

Magnavem, concept of a supersonic aircraft for up to 500 passengers, powered by nuclear fusion

Image: Oscar Vinals Magnavem  Oscar Vinals  Oscar Vinals

Magnavem, concept of a supersonic aircraft for up to 500 passengers, powered by nuclear fusion

Image: Oscar Vinals