Atlantean Airship

Atlantean Airship
Image from Steve Bowers
An Atlantean Airship in the skies of Corona

The Atlantean airship is a popular air vehicle used by the inhabitants of Atlantia on Corona. Though the Atlanteans take great pride in customising their vehicles, some details are the same in most of the airships. The central part of the ship is the floating balloon. The balloon can be made from a large variety of materials, and may be filled with lighter-than- air gases, low-pressure air mixes or near-vacuum. The most popular type of balloon is a smartex shell filled with helium and coated with solar cells. The smartex balloon is capable of changing its shape to aid in navigation, and can even change its lift by shrinking or expanding to change the helium's density.

In addition to the floating balloon, all Atlantean airships also feature one or more sails made of a special variant of fancloth. The fancloth for the Atlantean airships are made so that the fan openings can be closed, providing the airships with something that looks and acts like standard sailcloth sails. The sails are relatively useless as propulsion devices when switched to standard sail style, but for aesthetic reasons Atlanteans tend to use the fancloth only when they need to go against the course dictated upon them by the wind, and otherwise cruise with billowing sails. The power for the fancloth is most often produced by solar cells, but may originate from any power source. Though many Atlantean airships mimic sailing ships in the arrangement of their sails, there are more that feature their own unique setups. One popular alternative arrangement consists of three pairs of mast, with one of the pair towards the front of the balloon and one towards the back, each pair 120 degrees around the balloon's circumference from the other two.

The passenger compartment of the airships can take many forms, from enclosed cabins to open terraces on the top surface of the balloon, or even utility fog holding passenger's feet to the surface of the balloon.

 
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Development Notes
Text by Thorbjørn Steen

Initially published on 10 May 2007.