Lockheed Martin Introduces Long Haul Blimp To Compete With Trucks

Lockheed Martin Long Haul Blimp

Lockheed Martin has recently unveiled a prototype airship or “long haul blimp” designed to haul heavy cargo cross country that could one day compete with trucks.

Long Haul Blimp To Make Commercial Debut In 2018

The long haul blimp, dubbed the LMH-1, will be 300 feet long, 78 feet tall, and is designed to carry 47,000 pounds and 19 passengers, all while burning less fuel than a plane or helicopter. The truck will get 80% of its lift from helium (the rest comes from four diminutive engines) and features propeller driven propulsion and an air cushion landing system that allows the blimp to land on open water, snow, ice, or sand. Each blimp will cost $40 million and they are expected to make their commercial debut in 2018.

Lockheed Martin says that the blimp will be able to deliver to areas where trucks may not be able to go and could be particularly useful in the oil, gas, or mining industries.

No Buyers For Long Haul Blimp…Yet

Lockheed Martin says that they have no actual customers yet, but noted that several parties are interested. Said a spokesman for the company, “We are looking for opportunities that don’t really exist right now.

Sources:
CNBC
Transport Topics Online
LA Times