This means of transport can make trips between England and the United States consuming only 8% of the fuel used by an ordinary airplane. The Zeppelin will be powered by a pair of solar engines and two conventional engines and can be used for the international transport of low-emission cargo.
Although the lack of battery on board limits travel in daylight hours and its speed is only about half that of a Boeing 747, Varialift’s solar Zeppelin promises to be very useful for transporting goods. According to those responsible, this ship will be able to carry loads between 50 and 250 tons. Although it is possible, it is not on the horizon to manufacture the largest models with payloads of up to 3000 tons, but they are also not excluded.
Thus, bulky loads, such as electricity pylons, wind turbine blades and towers, or even prefabricated structures, such as oil platforms, can be transported. This means that these vehicles will have a weight limit, but not a size limit.
Varialift has not yet started building the definitive model, but has already started building the first prototype 140 meters long, 26 meters wide and 26 meters high – the prototype of the solar zeppelin is expected to be completed in nine months.