Airliners could fly in formation in future to save 10% fuel

Airbus plans to test two planes flying in a V formation during 2020 to test the concept, whereby planes would fly in a “flock” like geese do. The following plane(s) “surf” the airflow of the leading plane at a distance of 18 miles and use less fuel.

Advances in automated flight control, and satellite communications, should mean it is possible to see “flocks” of planes crossing the oceans within five years.