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The future of aviation was on display at the 50th Paris Air Show, a biennial exposition of aircraft that has happened every other year since 1909, with exceptions made during WWI and WWII. Representatives of governments and manufacturers from around the world gather to talk shop and show off their wares, technological accomplishments, and military prowess.
This year, talk trended towards the nitty-gritty. A lingering financial malaise across Europe and the U.S., the high price of jet fuel, and absence of American military jets (due to sequestration) all put a more frugal air on the exposition. Notable themes were electric and hybrid-electric planes, as well as carbon-graphite construction—improvements aimed at creating light, strong, sustainable planes in the face of high fuel prices. Unmanned aircraft were also featured, as well as the new drone-human hybrids known as optionally-manned machines.
Check out the gallery for our six favorite aircraft from the 2013 Paris Air Show.
Light Electric Trainer
Piaggio Aero P.1HH HammerHead
Project Zero Tiltrotor