AIRSHIP Resources (ARC) is awaiting the outcome of Roger Munk's bid to buy the assets of Westinghouse Airship Industries (WAI) before deciding how to proceed with its plans to operate large airships equipped with digital-video projection systems.

Arlington, Virginia-based ARC, has based its plans around the Sentinel 1240 large airship, a follow-on to the Sentinel 1000, built by WAI, but wants to begin preparatory flights later this year on the US West Coast. Munk says that he can deliver a Sentinel 1240 within 14 months, but is still negotiating to acquire WAI's assets (Flight International, 1-7 May, P21).

ARC vice-chairman Michael Conners says that the company may begin operations with a smaller airship. New craft are available from American Blimp, while there are some Skyships, built by WAI's predecessor Airship Industries, in storage in Florida, he says. A smaller airship would require ARC to scale down its video-display system, Conners admits.

The company plans to operate two airships initially, adding six later. Digital video would be laser-projected on to the inside or outside of the airship's envelope. Advertisements, live television broadcasts and even video "slots" as short as 60s, with prices starting at $500, will be displayed.

Source: Flight International