Interest in the potential of lighter-than-air (LTA) systems to meet modern requirements continues to grow as fuel prices and the cost of conventional aircraft transportation infrastructures increase. An added incentive to airship and aerostat development comes from the worldwide concern over the negative environmental effects of jet aircraft on the global climate. LTA systems have become the subject of renewed interest due to their unique qualities of low energy (propulsion) needs and significant static lift, which hold potential for commercial as well as intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR) missions. New hybrid LTA systems that incorporate a substantial degree of dynamic lift also offer great promise for providing additional air transportation services, and access to remote regions. At the same time, major advances are being made in the development of key enabling technologies essential to the creation and operation of long endurance, unmanned LTA systems. These topics and more will be explored by industry experts at the 21st AIAA Lighter-Than-Air Systems Technology Conference.
Lighter-than-Air Systems Technical Committee