When an aircraft crashes, the toll in term of human life is usually a heavy one. This is what made Ukranian engineer, Vladimir Tatarenko, who’s worked for the Russian OEM Irkut, look for a way to overcome the problem. He came up with the idea of a detachable cabin: in case of dire emergency, pilots would leave the cockpit and join the passengers in the cabin before it gets ejected from the rest of the plane.
A soft landing would be ensured via a system of parachutes and floaters that are activated as soon as the cabin breaks away. Vladimir is completely committed to this concept as he’s invested $50,000 in it as well as file a patent in 2014.
According to the American company BRS Aerospace, specialised in rescue parachutes for light aircraft, installing parachutes on to a Boeing 747 for example would require 21 one of them, each the size of a football field. Needless to say, this is impossible.
The concept of an ejectable cabin isn’t quite ready for market yet, however. Even though two Ukranian universities are working on a prototype, Vladimir Tatarenko is currently on the hunt for investors. For now, estimates to develop the concept run to two billion dollars and would take eight years.
So how much more expensive would an aircraft equipped with a detachable cabin be compared those in operation today? According to Vladimir Tatarenko, only “a few percent” of the catalogue price but 95% of passengers would be prepared to pay 15% more to fly in such an aircraft. This system however, would be totally useless in case of a missile firing or a bomb aboard the aircraft.