Boeing Headquarters - Battery experts are hailing the decision to scrap the new hybrid aircraft's lithium battery electrical system in favor of gerbil driven generators, a step in the right direction. Or should we say a jog on a miniature treadmill in the right direction.
"The gerbil technology came from NASA's mission to Mars research, they have been using the new GurboGen2 system to keep Mars mission simulations lit up," said a NASA engineer on condition of anonymity, "It uses two teams of 53 gerbils each, one rests while the other runs, they take turns every 30 minutes. The astronauts will also have to breed the gerbils to replenish the rodents on long missions, but for airliners, they will simply be..."
"Terminated," said a Boeing official, "they are expendable and only have life spans of a few weeks anyway. They are bred to run and run fast, which generates electricity without the danger of fire."
However, animal right activists claim that the safety from fire is not completely true. Reports have surfaced of gerbils spontaneously combusting during test flights of the new system. "We have an anonymous source that verifies our claim!" said Ajax Volinquin, a member of the international animal rights group RODENTO, "We feel this is cruel and unusual treatment of animals."
"This is ridiculous," said a Boeing official, "Gerbils occasionally smoke cigerettes off duty, but I have never seen one spontaneously combust!"