Airships should not only recall nostalgic episodes from the beginning of aviation. A closer look on this technology will make us aware that they can be an environmentally friendly and cost efficient alternative to planes, especially within cargo traffic.
Apart from their stunning efficiency in fuel consumption and contrary to common planes, dirigibles do not need any long and smooth runways for takeoff and landing. Instead of huge areas covered with cement, it is enough to have a pole or mobile mooring post on a meadow the size of the airship itself. This makes them especially attractive for remote areas with a poor or inexistent infrastructure.
Recently a few resourceful entrepreneurs revived the airship technology. In California, the startup company Airship Ventures operates a zeppelin for research which is financed by sightseeing flights for passengeras and rental for camera teams. On the other hand, the Canadian enterprise Aviation Capital has invested into the development of cargo airships with a carrying capacity of up to 100 tons, in cooperation with the aircraft company Lockheed Martin.