If this is the future of travel, where do I sign up? A bunch of Swiss aeronautical designers have spent the last five years working on the SmartFish project, a lightweight, fuel-efficient hydrogen fuel cell-powered aircraft. Now at the small model prototype phase, they claim that a full-scale model of their invention will carry two people at 560mph using less fuel than a car.
The HyFish prototype (you can see it in action on the SmartFish website) has a small wingspan, so flight relies on an aerodynamic configuration known as a lifting body. It is this and the craft's fuel-cell turbofan technology that make it work. Construction is simple and, with few moving parts and low operating and maintenance costs, it shouldn't be too costly to build - well, that's what they say.
There are two plans afoot: firstly, to make a 20-foot two-seater; and later on, a design that will fit 20 people on board. Finally, someone is making the minibus sexy.