The author gives an outline of the fundamentals and divides the subject into a discussion of what aerial transportation facilities we have at present and what should be considered for the future, stating that the inventors must determine how far they can go in providing equipment.
The first question regarding new equipment is, “Will it work?” The next, “Is it safe?” Safety is described as being purely relative, the statement being made that there is no such thing as absolute safety. There is no need to expect danger. We must have both speed and safety and making aerial equipment safe is well worthwhile, no matter at what expense of money and effort.
As to whether commercial aviation can be made to pay, economically and so far as society as a whole is concerned, this is a relative question depending upon the length of haul and the cost per mile.
Charts are shown and methods of obtaining basic costs described, together with formulas and coefficients so obtained. These are worked out for both airplanes and airships. Other charts giving the yearly operating costs of airships, their capital expense and cost curves, and the size of airships required for given cruising radii are shown and explained. The speed and cost data for cargo of varying time-value carried over various distances, and the cost of freight transportation, are presented in additional charts.