A new age of airships? – Airships were once hailed as the future of flight. Glamorous, luxurious and fast, they were one of the icons of the Art Deco era.
A new age of airships? – They developed from the hot air balloon; the Montgolfier brothers launched the first manned balloon flight in Paris in 1783.
A new age of airships? – Hydrogen-filled balloons were used for surveillance and reconnaissance during the American Civil War in the 1860s.
A new age of airships? – But the Hindenburg disaster at Lakehurst, New Jersey, in 1937, put paid to the era of passenger-carrying airships.
A new age of airships? – Over the decades, they have continued to be used for advertising, and at sporting events, such as this one at the London 2012 Olympics.
A new age of airships? – And now they appear to be undergoing something of a renaissance -- U.S.-based Aeros is working on the Aeroscraft, a cargo-carrying airship.
A new age of airships? – The Aeroscraft is designed to carry large loads of cargo over long distances to inaccesible areas where there is little or no infrastructure.
A new age of airships? – Aeroscorp, which also makes advertising airships, is testing a smaller version of the Aeroscraft at the company's massive flight test hangar in Tustin, California.
A new age of airships? – Other new-look airships in development include Raytheon's JLENS aerostat, designed to carry out surveillance missions, hovering high in the air 24 hours a day, seven days a week for 30 days at a time.