Flying like eagles

Designing a plane with individually controlled feathered wings.

Nature has long served as a source of inspiration for engineers — because living organisms have had countless years to evolve ideal solutions to the challenges of their environments, they’re an excellent jumping-off point for designing machines to navigate those same environments.

Now, aeronautics company Airbus has unveiled a new aircraft design inspired by birds of prey, such as eagles and falcons — and it hopes the wild-looking concept will inspire today’s youth to become the aerospace engineers of tomorrow. This sleek new concept takes inspiration from eagles to create a hybrid-electric design with individually controlled feathered wings.