Boom SUpersonic

Boom Supersonic announces new suppliers and refines Overture design

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Boom SUpersonic

Boom Supersonic presented the refined design of its supersonic airliner Overture at Farnborough Airshow today and also announced Collins Aerospace, Eaton, and Safran Landing as its new suppliers for key systems such as landing gear, fuel and inerting, avionics, and ice protection.

“Aviation has not seen a giant leap in decades. Overture is revolutionary in its design, and it will fundamentally change how we think about distance,” said Boom Founder and CEO Blake Scholl. “With more than 600 routes across the globe, Overture will make the world dramatically more accessible for tens of millions of passengers.”

Boom Supersonic says its Overture airliner combines a number of engineering innovations in aerodynamics, noise reduction and overall performance.

Key features include its four-engine design; Overture will be powered by four powerful, wing-mounted engines that enable the airliner to cruise at Mach 1.7 over water and just under Mach 1 over land. The design reduces noise while also decreasing costs for airline operators.

On take-off, Overture will use the world’s first automated noise reduction system and fly without afterburners, meeting the same strict regulatory noise levels as the latest subsonic airplanes and resulting in a quieter experience both for passengers and airport communities.

The aircraft will have a contoured fuselage with a larger diameter towards the front of the aircraft and a smaller diameter toward the rear. Boom has applied this design technique to minimise drag and maximise fuel efficiency at supersonic speeds. The aircraft’s wings are sculpted to enhance supersonic performance as well as improve subsonic and transonic handling.

It will also incorporate carbon composite materials into the majority of the build that are lighter, stronger and more thermally stable than traditional metal construction. Carbon composites can also be manufactured with highly complex curvature, contributing to the aircraft’s aerodynamic efficiency.

Overture has been developed from the beginning to be net zero carbon, flying on 100% SAF. Boom Supersonic says it is planning Overture’s first flight for 2026.

The company also announced a landmark partnering agreement with Northrop Grumman to develop special mission variants for the U.S. Government and its allies.

supernal evtol cabin

FIA2022: Supernal unveils eVTOL vehicle cabin concept

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supernal evtol cabin

Supernal revealed its initial eVTOL vehicle cabin concept at Farnborough International Airshow on Monday 18 July.

The unveiling provided the first look at how Hyundai Motor Group is integrating automotive capabilities to develop the Advanced Air Mobility (AAM) market.

Supernal has partnered up with Hyundai Motor Group’s design studios to create the cabin concept as it works to certify its eVTOL vehicle for commercial use in the US from 2028, and in the EU and UK shortly after.

“In order for Advanced Air Mobility to become a wide-spread mode of transportation, every detail – from the passenger experience to regulations and infrastructure – needs to be addressed from the start and work in lockstep with one another,” said Jaiwon Shin, President of Hyundai Motor Group and CEO of Supernal. “Leveraging Hyundai Motor Group’s mobility capabilities, Supernal is investing time and resources upfront to ensure the industry can scale to the masses in the coming decades and reach its exciting potential.”

“Supernal is partnering with Hyundai Motor Group’s top automotive designers to develop our eVTOL vehicle for manufacturability and wide-spread public acceptance,” Shin added. “We are taking the time to create a safe, light-weight commercial eVTOL that provides our future passengers with the security and comfort they find in their own cars.”

Supernal’s five-seat cabin concept design utilises the automotive industry’s reductive design approach to create the light-weight interior cabin which is made of forged carbon fiber and features ergonomically contoured seats with a cocoon-like environment for passengers.

SUpernal says its deployable seat consoles mimic automobile centre consoles and provide a charging station and stowage compartment for personal items. It also has grab handles built into the cabin doors and seatbacks assist with ingress and egress.

Cabin lighting includes overhead lights inspired by automobile sunroofs which adjust with the various stages of flight to emulate a “light therapy” effect.

The cabin concept also incorporates materials such as advanced recyclable carbon fibre reinforced thermoplastic, durable plant-based leather, recycled plastic fabric and responsibly sourced woods, and the seat frame utilises excess raw material from the airframe manufacturing process.

Virgin Atlantic A330neo

Virgin Atlantic reveals its state-of-the-art Airbus A330neo

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Virgin Atlantic A330neo

Virgin Atlantic has unveiled the experience on board its new A330neo fleet.

Virgin Atlantic became the first UK airline in 2019 to announce a firm order for up to 16 Airbus A330neos, reaffirming its commitment to flying the cleanest, greenest fleet in the sky.  The airline says its A330-900neos are designed to be 11% more fuel and carbon efficient than the A330-300 they’re directly replacing and will deliver a 50% reduction in airport noise contour.

The A330neo fleet cabin features an innovative new seat in the Upper Class cabin, evolution of its iconic social space and the Retreat Suite, which the carrier says is the most spacious suite in Virgin Atlantic’s history.

The airline’s in-house design team worked in collaboration with Factorydesign to develop the cabin’s Retreat Suite, Upper Class Suite and The Loft. The Retreat Suite in Upper Class is a brand-new innovation that offers two exclusive suites at the front of the cabin comprising a 6ft7” direct seat to fully flat bed and a 27” touchscreen with Bluetooth connectivity and wireless charging. Each suite has an ottoman that doubles up as an extra seat, and up to four people can dine, chat or play games in their own private social space.

As well as the Retreat Suite, the A330neo cabin will offer 30 new Upper Class suites. The forward-facing suite offers more space and storage and a fully closing privacy door. It also has passenger-controlled mood lighting, 17.3” touchscreen TV and a mirror.

The airline’s ‘Loft’ social space remains a focal point and a core part of the Upper Class experience. It consists of space for eight people, with four comfortable seats, allowing guests to sit and chat or enjoy refreshments from the new self-service fridge and drinks dispenser. Customers can also connect Bluetooth headphones to the dual panoramic 27” touchscreens or utilise the wireless charging facilities for their devices.

In Premium Class, the cabin consists of 46 Virgin Atlantic’s trademark burgundy Premium seats, with a 38” pitch and calf rests and a 13.3” touchscreen with Bluetooth audio in every seat. The airline is also offering its Premium customers an in-seat wireless charging pad.

Economy cabin customers will experience the largest ever economy screen at 13.3”, with an intuitive touchscreen and Bluetooth audio to connect headphones, with customers able to use their phone as a controller. There’s also plenty of storage, plus AC power and USB ports to keep gadgets energised. Customers have the choice between 28 Economy Delight seats, which offer an increased 34” seat pitch, or 156 Economy Classic seats, providing a 31” pitch.

Corneel Koster, Chief Customer and Operating Officer at Virgin Atlantic, commented: “When it comes to innovating for our customers, we never stand still. Our desire to create memorable experiences means we’ll continue to imagine with fresh ideas. We care about every detail of the cabin design and every step of our customer’s journey. We’re proud to unveil our state of the art A330neo and show the evolution of our customer experience, with each of our customers receiving a premium experience regardless of the cabin they travel in. They’ll be better connected with their fellow travellers and our amazing crew in the air, and with their friends and family on the ground.

“The A330neo plays a significant role in our multi billion dollar fleet transformation, demonstrating our commitment to the planet. We know the most impactful thing we can do as an airline is to fly the cleanest, greenest, youngest fleet possible and the A330neo is integral to achieving this goal. It’s truly a plane for the future.”

The carrier says its A330neo is expected to take off to Boston on its first customer flight in early October and tickets will go on sale later this month. The airline will take delivery of three aircraft from September, with the remaining deliveries following between 2023 and 2026.

FACC inaugurates high-tech cabin interiors plant in Croatia

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Following a soft opening of its latest production plant in December 2021, FACC has officially inaugurated the €15m high-tech plant in Croatia where it is manufacturing lightweight components for aircraft cabin interiors.

The ceremony was attended by 400 guests as well as FACC’s entire Croatian workforce, with a highlight being a helicopter show by Austrian aviation icon, Felix Baumgartner (best known for jumping to Earth attached to a helium balloon from the stratosphere), who landed in front of the building before officially opening the new plant. He was joined by FACC CEO, Robert Machtlinger, Pang Zhen, Chairman of the Supervisory Board and Croatian Prime Minister, Andrej Plenkovic.

Planned in collaboration with the Fraunhofer Institute, the new factory is situated close to Zagreb. The local infrastructure, proximity to highly trained experts and universities in the surrounding area with highly qualified specialists in many fields as well as the logistical connections to FACC’s corporate headquarters were all contributing factors to manufacturing cabin components for business jets and commercial aircraft at this particular location.

“After the successful start with more than 170 employees, we plan to expand the workforce of the plant to around 600 employees within the next four years,” said Macthlinger.

During the official opening of the factory, the next expansion phase of the site was revealed. Expansion stages two and three, which will be started with immediate effect, will see a threefold increase in the size of the plant.

Air New Zealand new cabin

Air New Zealand unveils its new Dreamliner cabin

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Air New Zealand new cabin

Air New Zealand has unveiled its new Boeing Dreamliner cabins. The aircraft are due to be delivered in 2024 and will feature Safran Seats’ new Business Premier Luxe seats designed for more space and privacy, as well as Skynest, which Air New Zealand says are the world’s first sleep pods in the sky for Economy travellers.

The airline says the importance of a good night’s sleep is clear following feedback from extensive customer research by the carrier over five years, and there’s a need for more space and comfort, so the new experience is designed around creating a “home away from home” that leaves customers refreshed and raring to go at their destination.

Air New Zealand CEO Greg Foran said: “New Zealand’s location puts us in a unique position to lead on the ultra-long-haul travel experience. We have zeroed in on sleep, comfort and wellness because we know how important it is for our customers to arrive well rested. Whether they are heading straight into a meeting or to their first holiday hotspot, they want to hit the ground running.

“It’s a proud moment to finally unveil five years of hard mahi, in what truly is a cabin of possibility – one that will provide customers with options to get some shuteye wherever they’re sitting.

“We wanted to offer our Economy customers a lie-flat option and that’s how Skynest was born. It’s going to be a real game changer for the economy travel experience.”

According to the airline’s Chief Customer and Sales Officer, Leanne Geraghty, the cabin’s interior design is inspired by the uniqueness of Aotearoa, from the forest-inspired carpet to the seats that draw inspiration from the Tui bird, New Zealand’s native bird.

The carrier has also added a Sky Pantry to the Premium Economy and Economy cabins. Passengers can stretch their legs, grab a bite to eat and hydrate at their leisure throughout their journey.

Within the Business Premier cabin, passengers are presented with two choices – both developed by Safran Seats in collaboration with Air New Zealand.

The Business Premier Seat offers a comfortable and private nest for a blissful journey and tranquil sleep. If travelling with a companion, the middle row allows passengers to open their nest and share their experience.

The Business Premier Luxe seat is made for “the best sleep in the sky”, according to its makers. For passengers looking for space and privacy, the suite offers a luxury experience with all the features of Business Premier but with a fully closing door and space for two people to dine.

Vincent Mascré, CEO of Safran Seats, said: “We are pleased to provide Air New Zealand with a product that meets their needs to offer choice and a product dedicated to ultra-long haul flight. These seats are the fruit of incredible work between our companies and it will allow a better journey for all their passengers. The creation of this seat displays the remarkable capabilities between Air New Zealand and the experienced Safran Seats teams based in United Kingdom.”

Finnair A350 Business Class_Seat_Sleeping_Position (3)

Finnair wins major awards for new Business Class cabin and onboard service

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Finnair A350 Business Class_Seat_Sleeping_Position (3)

Finland’s flag carrier Finnair has won the gold award in this year’s best ‘Cabin Concept’ category at the Onboard Hospitality Awards for its new long-haul cabin design.

Finnair long-haul cabins feature a brand-new Business Class with an eye-catching, non-reclining seat with fixed living space, as well as a new Premium Economy cabin and refreshed Economy cabin in a sleek new Nordic design.

the carrier’s long-haul offering also helped the airline to win the ‘best onboard textiles’ category for its premium economy neck pillow and woven blanket designed in partnership with Marimekko.

The new tableware designed in partnership with Iittala was also highly commended in the category of “onboard service equipment for passengers”.

David Kondo, Finnair Head of Customer Experience and Product Design, said: “The feedback from our customers and the market for our new long-haul product has been overwhelmingly positive and we are thrilled that Finnair is being further recognised with wins from both the Onboard Hospitality Awards and the International Yacht and Aviation Awards.

“We’d like to thank all of our supplier partners and our dedicated staff who worked for this program over the many years of development to make this experience a reality.”

Finnair was also a finalist for ‘Cabin Concepts’ in the Crystal Cabin Awards 2022 taking place in Hamburg on 14 June, and in addition, the carrier received the APEX 2022 Passenger Choice Award for best Wi-Fi in Europe.

FACC unveils cabin concept

FACC unveils cabin concept for next-generation aircraft

By Aircraft Interiors Expo 2022, Design, FeaturedNo Comments
FACC unveils cabin concept

FACC has unveiled its BIOS future cabin concept at AIX 2022.

The main focus of the concept is placed on the needs of passengers, as well as the use of sustainable materials. The company says it has opted for a resin derived from sugar cane, which has been optimised for use in aviation through intensive research work.

“When redesigning the aircraft interior, we paid particular attention to making efficient use of the available space,” explains CEO Robert Machtlinger. The result: 20% more room to move and 50% more storage space compared to current-generation aircraft. This was made possible by a design approach that integrates seamlessly with the load-bearing elements of the aircraft.

The entire backrest is transformed into a screen that can be connected to the passenger’s own device and can also play smartphone apps from third-party providers. Passenger can adjust the ventilation or individually configure design elements by using dedicated control centres.

The cabin is 100% wheelchair-accessible and has a disability-friendly lavatory. “In terms of accessibility, there is, quite literally, still a lot of room for improvement in aviation,” emphasises Nico Langmann who is a world top 20 player in wheelchair tennis. “Currently, not only the processes themselves, but also cabin designs are not always suitable for wheelchairs, which is why this new design is very promising.”

Ultra-light materials made from renewable resources will also drastically reduce the aircraft’s CO2 emissions. To this end, a new lightweight material derived from sugar cane has been developed following many years of research. The properties of this material make it well-suited for use in aviation. Its surface is not only extremely robust, but also resistant to heat and chemicals.

fly your wheels

Collins Aerospace and NIAR reveal concept for power wheelchair travellers

By Aircraft Interiors Expo 2022, Design, Featured, SeatingNo Comments
fly your wheels

Collins Aerospace has teamed up with researchers and students at the National Institute for Aviation Research (NIAR) at Wichita State University in the US to develop the Fly Your Wheels Suite concept, a certifiable design allowing passengers to travel on board an aircraft using their own power wheelchairs without eliminating existing seats.

The Fly Your Wheels Suite design re-engineers the left closet near the front door of a single aisle aircraft into a safe and functional suite for a passenger travelling on a wheelchair. Requiring a one-time modification, the suite enables both forward and rear-facing orientations, depending on the occupant’s preference. If unused, the suite can easily transition back into a functional closet or even an area where crew can relax.

“Helping enable air travel for passengers of all mobilities is an imperative for the entire air travel industry and one we are eager to continue collaborating on with our partners,” said Luis Gomez, virtual engineering manager for NIAR. “That we might be able to provide a safe, interactive and spacious solution for wheelchair users, allowing them to board, deplane and travel as any other passenger is an incredible opportunity.”

Fly Your Wheels Suite minimally impacts existing seating arrangements and cabin cargo space, effectively adding an extra passenger to an aircraft’s load. While in use, the cabin cargo volume taken by the added passenger in a Fly Your Wheels Suite is given back by two forward upper monument stowage spaces, known as bustles, providing an equivalent amount of storage as an unmodified closet.

“The addition of another passenger combined with the suite’s inherent flexibility is an incredible innovation and key differentiator of the Fly Your Wheels Suite project,” said Glenn Johnson, technical fellow of industrial design at Collins Aerospace. “This project really underscores the world of possibilities available when combining the considerable body of knowledge from NIAR with the industry expertise of Collins.

Luis Gomez added: “The Fly Your Wheels Suite concept solves two problems at once. First and foremost, it provides passengers with reduced mobility the opportunity to travel comfortably and safely in their own wheelchair while allowing them to board and deplane the aircraft independently, as in other public transit systems. Secondly, it provides airlines with an additional passenger on board when in use and a rest space for crew members when unoccupied.

“Helping passengers fly on their own wheelchair has been in the back on my mind since I met Michele Erwin from All Wheels Up several years ago. Based on several studies, it is known that one of the major fears for passengers with reduced mobility is to lose, or have their wheelchair damaged, during travel. The core focus of the Fly Your Wheels Suite project is to solve this problem, providing passengers assurance they will be able to reach their destination safely and comfortably while sitting on their own wheelchair and therefore eliminating part of their concern.”

Elevate by Teague

World’s first single-aisle cabin ‘floating’ furniture on show at AIX

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Elevate by Teague

Teague and NORDAM will be showcasing Elevate, the world’s first single-aisle aircraft cabin that uses “floating” furniture, at the Aircraft Interiors Expo 2022 on Stand 7C10.

Elevate, which uses NORDAM’s patented Nbrace composite seat attachment, reimagines the narrowbody experience – offering passengers more space, privacy and comfort in a home-like cabin without compromising seat numbers.

As more single-aisle aircraft enter service on longer routes, the onboard passenger experience is in direct competition with twin-aisle aircraft that fly the same routes. Passengers may feel the premium experience in a narrowbody cabin does not meet or exceed the standard of a widebody – owing to the reduced cabin footprint, seat pitch and constrained cabin architecture.

Teague says that, to date, innovation in the cabin interior has been limited due to furniture attachment points being in the seat tracks only. Elevate is the first cabin in history to implement sidewall attachment points that enable the creation of a lighter and more efficient suite environment.

The suite environment wraps around the whole living space for front row and business class passengers, creating a more exclusive and private zone that moves away from the typical tubular environment into a more luxurious residential atmosphere, while customised entrance lighting and overhead bins deliver a wow factor for all passengers entering the cabin.

Anthony Harcup, Senior Director of Airline Experience at Teague, says: “At a time when passenger wellbeing and sustainability are industry priorities, Elevate heralds-in a new generation of beautiful, simplified cabin products that will enable airlines to deliver exceptional experiences for their passengers with the economic efficiency that these smaller aircraft were designed to deliver.”

NORDAM CEO Meredith Siegfried Madden says: “This is a next-generation innovation that enables more creative freedom for the aircraft interior design community. By revolutionising how seats and other monuments attach to an aircraft, Nbrace recruits previously wasted space, transforming it into new aesthetic possibilities and dramatically improved passenger comfort, space and privacy.”

AIX

Aircraft Interiors Expo announces an innovative planning platform

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AIX

Aircraft Interiors Expo (AIX), the global event dedicated to the aircraft interiors industry will be returning to Hamburg, Germany, from 14-16 June 2022 with an innovative new show planning tool called AIX Connect.

The new tool is designed to help key airline buyers meet exhibitors during the show so they can build business connections and discuss new projects. The event organisers say the tool will play a pivotal role in facilitating the industry’s desire to source the latest cabin innovations, technologies, in-flight entertainment and connectivity solutions by facilitating targeted business connections based on specific product requirements.

Major OEMs such as Boeing and Airbus, as well leading suppliers 3M, Acro Aircraft Seating, AD Aerospace, BAE Systems, EnCore, MGR Foamtex, Jamco Corporation, Collins Aerospace, Lufthansa Technik, Panasonic Avionics Corporation and Recaro are among companies confirmed to exhibit at the show.

Polly Magraw, AIX Event Director, said: “Connecting people to make new business contacts and source the right products is the cornerstone of Aircraft Interiors Expo.  As we emerge from the pandemic, we know that suppliers and airlines are eager to return in-person to save time and resources in their efforts to fast-track the industry’s recovery and seek the latest cabin innovations to enhance the passenger experience.

“We can’t wait to see the results of these incredibly important meetings as we support the aircraft interiors industry by facilitating networking with targeted business connections, as well as meeting all of their needs at the event with AIX Connect Lounge and concierge service; building connections has never been easier.”