The future of air travel: flying trains??
If a plane and a train got drunk and made sweet, sweet love, it would be amazing because a) those airline bottles are tiny, and b) it would probably produce the awesomeness that is the Clip-Air. That's right, thanks to the dudes at Switzerland’s École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), the plane of the future might be able to ride the clouds and the rails. Witness the CGI-aided plans:
At its most basic, the Clip-Air's an overarching plane under which three clip-on cabins ride, containing either cargo (the yellow one), or people (the blue ones).
The landing gear, engines and cockpit are all attached to the actual plane and operate completely independent of the cabins.
The whole package kinda looks like a white stealth bomber holding three gigantic missiles. Wait, why don't we have those??
Although it looks inconceivably huge, this schematic shows that like "actually-not-all-that-big" Michael Jordan, the Clip-Air's not all that tall, but rather makes the most of its wing-span, getting the equivalent of three Airbus A320 fuselages under only 1.5xs greater breadth.
And don't forget those 125-person cabins are also functioning train cars, meaning you can literally get in one at a train station in NYC and get out on the tarmac in London... Which would actually really blow if you thought you were just boarding the train across town.
Just don't go running down to your local train station looking for a Clip-Air anytime in the foreseeable future as they're literally just unveiling the concept (which they've been working on since '09) to the public, meaning, for now, you'll just have to console yourself with some of those tiny, tiny bottles.