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By J.D. Houvener
Patent Attorney and Founder

Hi, I’m J.D. Houvener, the host of The Bold Today’s Show, where the adventurer and entrepreneur get your daily dose of inspiration to make the world a better place. Okay, we’re in part three of our aerospace focus, and today’s challenge is for you to think about who your favorite airline company is. You’ve flown probably quite a few different airliners. For me, being a Seattle native and flying a lot in the Northwest, Alaska Airlines was actually my favorite. Alaska has top-quality customer service, and you know what you’re going to get when you get on board. So put in the comments below what your favorite airline is and why. A lot of you are passionate about who your favorite airline is.

Today’s invention topic is, of course, about airplanes. One of the ways you realize where your favorite airline is by the color on the paint of the airplane. Maybe you see the logo sticking up on the vertical tail, and you see the paint along the sides. What you might not think about too much is the paint itself on the outside of the airplane matters a lot. Weight in an airplane, and even more than weight, drag means any time aerodynamics are flowing over an object. If there’s anything that hangs up on it, it will cause a significant amount of drag and reduce the fuel efficiency of an airplane. In a study, up to 1.5 percent of an entire fuel economy of an airplane is due to chips in the paint on the airplane skin, unbelievably so. The application of paint and what goes into the layering and how a plane is painted makes a big part of what makes that airplane more or less fuel-efficient.

So, our patent of the day, as you can see here, is going to be a very new style of paint and an outer layer on these new composite airplanes that are coming out. The 787 Dreamliner is an example. It’s got a composite skin. So what’s important now more than ever is a concern about lightning strikes. They’re flying around, and you can get a lightning bolt hitting the airplane. With metallic airplanes, it’s not as big of a deal because that energy is actually routed along the skin to specific channels and off to another end, and they will go toward the ground. With a composite structure, it can actually blast holes in the structure. So you can see from this patent, there’s this woven layer of fibers and materials that are in the perfect layer that sits right on top of the skin as part of the paint and the final finish of the airplane. So that it’ll disperse electric energy like a lightning bolt and prevent it from having a strike and creating a hole in the airplane.

Coming back around to who your favorite airline is and what it means, hopefully, you’ve learned something about the technology, and now you think of an airplane when you look at the logo and the paint. You know what kind of technology goes into it. So I encourage you to share this with a friend or family, help them think about whether they can visualize their favorite airline and what goes into the technology on the outside of the plane. Hope you have a great day and thanks for tuning in for this version of The Bold Today’s Show. Go big, go bold.

About the Author
J.D. Houvener is a Registered USPTO Patent Attorney who has a strong interest in helping entrepreneurs and businesses thrive. J.D. leverages his technical background in engineering and experience in the aerospace industry to provide businesses with a unique perspective on their patent needs. He works with clients who are serious about investing in their intellectual assets and provides counsel on how to capitalize their patents in the market. If you have any questions regarding this article or patents in general, consider contacting J.D. at