It is still in the design stage, but it has already caused ripples of excitement in the international aviation community. Plans are underway to built an airplane that can break the sound barrier: five times over! The proposed airplane, the A2, will fly at speeds of 3,800mph, flying from Brussels to Sydney in four hours and from London to New York in two. The plane will be powered by liquid hydrogen, which is environmentally friendly and non-polluting. The project is a brain-child of the Lapcat project, an acronym for “Long-Term Advanced Propulsion Concepts and Technologies.” The plane is expected to be ready for commercial flights within 15-25 years.
Whether the project will live up to the hype remains to be seen. However, what is clear is that this project has the potential to fulfill an ancient prophecy which predicts extraordinary advances in travel during the time of Redemption, through which the Jews will be brought to the Land of Israel. In the words of the prophet Daniel, the Jews will be brought to Israel on “heavenly clouds.” The Rebbe refers to these clouds as “airplanes,
If you had asked a Jew over a hundred years ago, before the Wright brothers made their big discovery, how much time it would take to gather all the exiles, they probably would have answered that it would be a process of months or years. With the development of aircraft technology, the process can now be reduced to a few hours, although granted, convincing all the Jews to move to Israel en masse would still take a miracle of enormous magnitude.
The revolution in technology, which has taken place across the board, in all fields and disciplines, brings the prophecies of Redemption into the realm of possibility. All these developments are for one purpose--to enable the tremendous transformation that will occur in the world with the complete revelation of G-dliness. We will see how nature is a tool of G-d, and how we have the power to overcome all limitations. The natural and the miraculous will merge in a wondrous unity, to carry out their Divine purpose.
Prof. Yirmiyahu Branover is chairman of the Center of Magnetohydrodynamic Studies and Training at Ben-Gurion University.