Aircraft will become more environmentally friendly if they fly exactly in the wind

Scientists at the University of Reading found that last winter, on commercial flights between New York and

London could use 16% less fuel. It's all about making the best use of the gusts at altitude.

New satellites will soon allow more accuratetrack transatlantic flights. This capability could allow aircraft to be more flexible in their flight paths to follow tailwinds and avoid oncoming gusts. This will help the aviation sector reduce emissions cheaply and quickly, without waiting for a technological breakthrough.

"Existing transatlantic routeslead to more active combustion of fuels and the release of carbon dioxide than they need, - explains Katie Wells, a female Ph.D. from the University of Reading and lead author of the study. "While wind is partly taken into account in route planning, considerations such as reducing overall flight costs are now prioritized over minimizing fuel consumption and pollution."

Simple adjustments to flight paths are muchcheaper and can immediately benefit, scientists believe. There is an urgent need to reduce aviation emissions to mitigate the future impacts of climate change.

During the study, scientists analyzed about35,000 flights in both directions between New York and London from December 1, 2019 to February 29, 2020. The experts compared the fuel consumption of these flights and the fastest route that would be possible during the flight, with more accurate air flow accounting.

It turned out that taking advantage of the windit is possible to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 6.7 million kg during the winter period. Average fuel savings per flight were 1.7% for flights west to New York and 2.5% for flights east to London.

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