WIRED magazine has a post up about reviving the idea of nuclear powered jetliners:
“We need to be looking for a solution to aviation emissions which will allow flying to continue in perpetuity with zero impact on the environment,” Professor Poll tells the paper. “We need a design which is not kerosene-powered, and I think nuclear-powered aeroplanes are the answer beyond 2050. The idea was proved 50 years ago, but I accept it would take about 30 years to persuade the public of the need to fly on them.”
A better ( and safer) idea than putting a nuclear reactor on an airplane would be a nuclear-powered super zeppelin. The crash risk would be minimal and such a super-zeppelin would have vast advantages in lift over an airplane and be able to ship large quantities of goods virtually anywhere on earth. Or it could hover semi-permanetly as a SIGINT platform with capabilities of being an “aircraft carrier in the sky” for UAV’s.
Inventive, aeronautical and physics types feel free to sound off in the comments.