Bell He­li­copter con­tin­ues to shape the fu­ture of ver­ti­cal lift

SP's MAI - - AEROSPACE DEVELOPMENTS -

Bell He­li­copter re­cently un­veiled its vi­sion for the fu­ture of ro­tor­craft — the FCX-001. This is Bell He­li­copter’s first con­cept air­craft and presents a 3D road map for de­liv­er­ing safer, smarter and more ef­fi­cient ro­tor­craft so­lu­tions. “For the past 80 years, Bell He­li­copter has imag­ined the art of the pos­si­ble and brought those dreams to life,” Bell He­li­copter’s Pres­i­dent and CEO Mitch Sny­der said dur­ing the open­ing cer­e­mony at the HAI Heli-Expo. “Six months ago we cre­ated a ded­i­cated team to fo­cus on emerg­ing tech­nolo­gies and how we could in­cor­po­rate them into our prod­ucts. Among that team’s first tasks was to dis­play vis­ually the tech­nolo­gies and in­no­va­tions that present a road map that we en­vi­sion bring­ing to mar­ket.”

Bell He­li­copter formed a core group of en­gi­neers and a team of graphic de­sign­ers that proved to be a highly col­lab­o­ra­tive team of prob­lem solvers. It was through this process that the FCX-001, a con­cept air­craft, came to light to phys­i­cally demon­strate a new way of think­ing.

The con­cept air­craft was built to ad­dress the evolv­ing de­mands of our cus­tomers and demon­strate key tech­nolo­gies that rev­o­lu­tionise the pi­lot and pas­sen­ger ex­pe­ri­ence, in­clud­ing: A new anti-torque sys­tem in the tail boom de­signed to change the safety, noise and per­for­mance pa­ram­e­ters of ver­ti­cal lift air­craft for­ever; Hy­bridised propul­sion com­bines ad­vanced ther­mal en­gine cores for the main propul­sion; An air­frame that is made from ad­vanced sus­tain­able ma­te­ri­als to pro­vide struc­tural per­for­mance and of­fer con­fig­u­ra­tions that our cus­tomers de­sire; A land­ing gear with non­tra­di­tional ge­ome­tries that fa­cil­i­tate function when com­bined with ad­vanced ma­te­ri­als and ac­tu­a­tion; Mor­ph­ing ro­tor blades that al­low air­craft to op­ti­mise per­for­mance in dif­fer­ent flight regimes; A sin­gle pi­lot seat and an en­tirely new flight deck ex­pe­ri­ence with the pi­lot con­trol­ling the air­craft through aug­mented re­al­ity and an ar­ti­fi­cial in­tel­li­gence com­puter as­sis­tance sys­tem and a highly mod­u­lar pas­sen­ger cabin en­hanced with the same aug­mented re­al­ity tech­nol­ogy for in­di­vid­u­alised in­fo­tain­ment.

“Be­ing a pi­o­neer in the air­craft in­dus­try is in our DNA and we want to share this re­newed pas­sion with the world. The FCX-001 points the way for our fu­ture — a re­newed fo­cus on in­no­va­tive so­lu­tions and tech­nolo­gies. When the time is right we look for­ward to shar­ing more of what we’re do­ing be­hind closed doors,” added Sny­der.

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