Emirates to Build Windowless Planes

Emirates has unveiled its plans to build windowless planes, with the aim of paving the way for removing windows from all future planes.

Also revealed were designs for a new first class, which feature virtual windows supported by fibre-optic camera technology to provide images projected from outside the aircraft.

The company’s president, Tim Clarke told BBC that swapping real windows for virtual ones would reduce energy costs and rid the planes of “structural weaknesses”.

“Can the new generation of aircraft be windowless with this technology? In my view there’s no reason why not,” said Clarke. “The aircraft are lighter, the aircraft could fly faster, they’ll burn far less fuel and fly higher.”

The view, Clarke said, was also much better. “The quality of the imagery is so good, it’s better than with the natural eye, as if you were in the window seat.”

Aviation expert Douglas Drury confirmed Clarke’s claims, saying that planes with windowless frame are more solid. “I think this is a very big step because they have to build the support structure around the windows and as we’ve seen recently the windows are vulnerable to penetration, to breaking,” said Drury.

“That happened with a Southwest Airlines jet in the United States recently, the engine blew and the window was gone and the passenger was pulled out of the airplane. That is a structural issue and not having windows would be somewhat of a safety barrier.”

Would you ride a windowless plane?