Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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airliner passenger cartridges

Don't put people in the cabin - put the cabin in the plane
  (+25, -1)(+25, -1)(+25, -1)
(+25, -1)
  [vote for,

The current system of getting people on and off passenger planes is non-optimal. Everybody has to file through that single little doorway, and it takes forever. And god help you if you fall asleep while waiting to board your plane -- you'll wake up only to see your plane taking off without you. (yes, this has happened to me... no, I'm not usually that dumb ;^))

Here's a better system: when you get to the departure gate, the gate attendent allows you entrance into a fuselage-shaped passenger- cabin-cartridge that is already sitting on the tarmac. You can find your seat, sit down, have a drink, and relax. When the plane arrives, a crane, (or elevator, or giant mecha-robot, or whatnot) removes the plane's current passenger-cabin- cartridge through the roof of the plane (with all the passengers still in it) and lowers it gently to the tarmac, and then inserts the new cartridge (with you in it) into the plane. This allows the plane to leave again immediately, without having to wait for people to file out and file in, for the cabin to be cleaned, etc. All that business can be taken care of 'off line', without holding up the plane.

(you're probably thinking, sure, but they still have to wait for the plane to be refueled! Well, yes... unless they have a plane-fuel-cartridge that they can quickly switch out as well)

Jeremi, Mar 26 2002

Fast Load Ferry http://www.halfbake...a/Fast-load_20ferry
Similar problem, similar solution. [calum, Mar 26 2002]

Thunderbird 2 is FAB http://www.fab1.co....thunderbird%202.htm
you just need a people pod. though personally i love the underwater one (Thunderbird 4)... [mymus, Mar 26 2002, last modified Oct 21 2004]

Emergency Egress http://www.halfbake.../emergency_20egress
[phoenix, Mar 26 2002]

Ballistic Recovery Systems http://www.airplaneparachutes.com/
Whole-plane parachutes [phoenix, Mar 26 2002, last modified Oct 21 2004]

Containerized Passenger Service http://www.halfbake...Passenger_20Service
Similar idea. [wiml, Jun 30 2002]

I dream of location replacement I_20dream_20of_20location_20replacement
why not all of that but while sleeping? [James Newton, Mar 21 2019]


       I hope I'm not seated in the cabin cartridge when the pilot spills his coffee and accidently hits "eject" whilst we are travelling some 10,000 feet over the Pacific Ocean. (Yes, I know there'd be safeties and such)   

       Would first-class have a separate, better quality cartridge? Could we outfit each cartridge with big parachutes in case of an emergency ejection?   

       Upon further examination, current technology would allow us to do this very idea today using busses and cargo planes. Just drive on, fly to the destination, and drive off. The bus could even drop you off at your destination. Just ring the bell for your stop. Ding!
Canuck, Mar 26 2002

       Doesn't this introduce the risk of not just your luggage, but yourself being lost in transit?
mcscotland, Mar 26 2002

       I'm sure this idea was half-baked, I just can't find it. It was proposed as an anti terrorist measure.
dare99, Mar 26 2002

       Like Eggs in an egg carton, perhaps. Actually that might be a good prototype
<Obligatory Scold>No cheating by hard-boiling them</Obligatory Scold>
thumbwax, Mar 26 2002

       Single passenger capsules could double as 'rooms' in a Japanese-style 'capsule hotel'. So, you could go to sleep in your hotel in Tokyo. Your capsule would be collected in the night and loaded on an aeroplane. You would wake up in your hotel in London.
hippo, Mar 26 2002

       United Airlines (and possibly others, I'm not sure) use a system similar to this for cargo/luggage. Large storage 'bins' are filled up with luggage and then positioned into the plane's cargo hold.
waugsqueke, Mar 26 2002

       I'm sure this was mentioned on "Tomorrow's World" some time ago. Think they were talking about Heathrow/Gatwick expansions and extra runways.   

       Anyone remember it?
Mayfly, Mar 26 2002

       in 'Lord of the Flies' they are dropped out of the plane in a seperate tube just before the beginning - not baked but obviously quite a common idea
chud, Mar 26 2002

       Dulles Airport has "mobile lounges" which people can board at the terminal and ride directly to the aircraft. The same type of vehicle is also used to shuttle passengers between the main and remote terminals. It would seem like the mobile lounge would be a good approach for improving airline efficiency by allowing passengers to be taken to an airplane without having it taxi all the way to the terminal. In practice, I don't think it really works that well.
supercat, Jun 29 2002

       The cartridge would also be sealed off from the pistol toting pilots! WooHoo!
mxheadrm, Jul 15 2002

       I wonder what will happen to passenger who are to continue same flight for next destination !! Any ideas ?
saint, Oct 02 2002

       My problem with this, along with what [bobofthefuture] said, is that this would mean that your friends/family members who are escorting you to the plane can't stay with you while you're waiting for your flight. I'm sure only ticketed passengers would be allowed in the "fuselage-shaped passenger- cabin-cartridge". Also, what is to become of the stand-by passenger method, which involves a wait-and-see methodology?
XSarenkaX, Nov 01 2002

       hmm... now HERE's some food for thought. This is really quite interesting. And I agree completely with mcscotland. What happens if you as well as your luggage were to become lost?
bmwrox, Aug 06 2003

       [+] Had the same idea myself, but 4 years after you.
Worldgineer, Mar 08 2006

       //What about the structural integrity of the plane?// Airplanes are double-skinned - it would not be an unworkable design to hinge the tail and allow the inside to roll out on wheels. When the new cartridge is in, retract the wheels and lock the cartridge in place, then lock the tail closed.
Worldgineer, Mar 08 2006

       [Worldgineer] - just like a cargo aircraft, perhaps?
Most of those use the nose hinge instead of the tail.
neutrinos_shadow, Mar 08 2006

       yeah, but how is each person gonna use the bathroom? or get a snack?
craziness, Mar 08 2006

       To speed up the process even further, the passenger cartridge could come with wings, engines, tailplane and cockpit pre-fitted.   

       I suppose what you are saving is downtime on the more expensive bits of the plane. +
spidermother, Mar 09 2006

       C-130 + roller-coaster carts
FlyingToaster, Jul 27 2010

       I'll go for this only if it's also an emergency rescue cartridge with its own parachute, retrorockets, automatic landing system etc... :)
cowtamer, Jul 29 2010

       I'd go for this all the cartridges had sensors, so 120 say "don't pitch down".
not_morrison_rm, Mar 23 2019

       Standard on all Boeing aircraft with MCAS?
UnaBubba, Apr 05 2019


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