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Flight 23.11.1956

50 years ago

Supply and Demand

It has been said that the world's airlines, in ordering so much new equipment during the last twelve months, must have taken leave of their senses. Superficial consideration of the facts might suggest that this is indeed the case but a closer scrutiny gives a different interpretation. We have set our sights on 1962 as the year in which the orderbooks of today will be translated into actual aeroplanes well bedded down in operational service. We recorded in last week's issue a statement made by Boeing that throughout the sixties there will be a market for 1,500 medium jet transports and possibly 300 big jets-an appraisal which in our view gives realistic scale to the size of the future market. Unless there is a world catastrophe, the rise of traffic will continue inexorably as air travel becomes more widely accepted by surface travellers, as the fares they pay are reduced, as the world population and its living standards rise, and as new routes are opened and old ones intensified.

Chemical Fuels

There is confident prediction in the United States (reports Aviation Week) that the production of chemical fuels for aircraft propulsion will soon become a billion-dollar business and our contemporary goes on to suggest that not only turbojet/afterburner combinations, but ramjets and rocket motors also, will call for "a variety of propellants drawn from the vastly expanded fuels spectrum." Spectacular increments in performance are promised for aircraft and missiles, and current calculations are said to indicate that turbojet performance can be increased by at least 50 per cent. Reductions in fuel weight, tank volume and engine dimensions are attendant benefits in prospect.

Civil Airlift

Several practical moves to help Hungarian refugees by the use of aircraft were made last week. A Viking of Eagle Aviation, Ltd., took off from Blackbushe for Vienna last Friday morning loaded with supplies, and a DC-3 chartered by the Institute of Directors left Lympne for the same destination that afternoon with four tons of food and medical requirements. Both were due to bring back refugees to this country. The Royal Aero Club informed the International Help the Children organization that 30 of its members had offered to fly their own aircraft-ranging from Doves and Rapides to Procters and Austers-at their own expense to Austria to bring back refugee children.

Source: Flight International