Airbus 'pod concept' design for planes with detachable cabins
Aircraft manufacturer Airbus has patented a design for an aircraft with a detachable cabin.
The designs, filed with the United States Patent and Trademark Office, demonstrate how the idea would work in order to cut down on boarding times meaning planes spending less time on the ground.
It would mean passengers would board a cabin which would then be placed on a plane similar to how shipping containers are transported.
"The period of imobilisation on the ground of the aeroplanes between two successive flights increases their operational cost. Indeed, the longer this period of immobilisation, the less actual flight time of each aeroplane," Airbus stated in its filing.
"A long period of immobilisation on the ground can also result in additional fuel consumption."
A Airbus 'pod concept' design for planes with detachable cabinsccording to technology publication Wired, which first reported the filing, Airbus added: “Passengers could be pre-seated in cabin pods before the plane actually arrives, ready for integration on the aircraft, saving time and making processing much simpler.”
The aircraft manufacturer also believes its proposal - dubbed the "aircraft pod concept" will allow planes to be modified quickly and easily.
This could allow changes to allow "different levels of comfort" for passengers.
However, Airbus' proposal requires new docking stations and equipment to transport the "pods" between the airport and the plane.
Airbus filed the patent in February 2013 but it was only approved by the United States Patent and Trademark Office earlier this week.