Ford Tri-motor and Father’s Day Gifts

On Sunday I had the opportunity to fly in a Ford Tri-motor airplane, the first mass produced metal aircraft.  Ed Vinarcik has written an excellent article on the Tri-motor.  I’m working on an article on renewable energy powered flight as air travel is essential for a sustainable future.  The article will be located in the Power, Transportation and Communication section of the website.

Here are some pictures of me with the Tri-motor.  From Ed’s article above, the Tri-motor cruises at 90mph and consumes 45 gallons per hour of fuel, which combines for a gas mileage of 2 miles per gallon, which doesn’t sound too great.  But, with 12 people in the plane, this is 24 miles per gallon per person, which is not so bad (think of us driving solo in a car that only gets 24 miles per gallon).  With modern passenger aircraft, reaching 100 miles per gallon is a reality, and powering it with a variety of sustainable fuel sources is practical.

This plane was the first one in Eastern Airline’s fleet in 1929.

Where was it made?  In THE Motor City, of course!

Can you see Equinox House in this picture?  This is where the old meets the new.  If you locate the oval pond near the curve in the interstate, we are the little white speck between the pond and the interstate.  Why can you see Equinox House, but not the neighboring homes?  That white roof reflects rather than absorbs, and it makes a big difference on comfort.

Just as the Tri-motor and I look old and out-of-date, I expect Equinox House to look like the Model T of super performance, 100% sustainable housing sometime in the future.  Although difficult to see, I have my “Photon Torpedo” tee-shirt on from the University of Illinois’ 1997 Sunrayce Team.  The front says “Resistance is futile”.  Here’s a picture of the Photon Torpedo I found on the web.

One final note with the recent Father’s Day.  We had an enjoyable day with a crawdad boil at a local bar that was serving beer from one of my favorite breweries (Bell’s from Kalamazoo Michigan).

I enjoy bbq and sour cream n onion, as reflected by my Father’s Day gifts from the kids.  My chickens were also quite happy with the presents .  As strange as these “foods” may seem now, will the path of unsustainable living lead to a shift in food production from our current to one consisting of protein-rich bugs?  Hormigas con queso, anyone?