The Utility concept is a modular design approach, with a “wing and boom” configuration featuring different cabin designs that provide the operation flexibility to define a “multi-purpose vehicle” of the skies. Being able to transport 10 passengers comfortably, or a ton of cargo, it is able to provide a Private owned operation or Safety and Rescue one, with its STOL (Short Takeoff and Landing) capability which can cover distances unavailable by helicopter. For better performance and lower maintenance, Utility is built around a simple structure with two tail booms and two electric fans embedded in the wing. The wing is detachable and able to connect with standard modules for higher flexibility. This modular approach allows versatility of use through reconfigurable interior for different operational needs. The wing’s ability to be autonomous allows for an increase in operational productivity. Embedded Structural Health Monitoring systems offer low maintenance costs and the use of 3D printed parts lowers production costs and reduces the need for spare parts during the aircraft’s operational life.
Combining the human, technological, social and economic perspectives, newFACE generated, developed and tested new integrated concepts for future aircrafts, considering the external configuration, interior layout, materials, technologies and processes which could be used in their development. NewFACE tentatively used a holistic approach to aircraft design, integrating the full product and operation lifecycle from the beginning.
During this process, virtual and physical mock-ups were built and tested. From the proposal refinement, three concepts with different purposes were selected: V-Tail, Boxwing and Utility. The concepts materialization provided an integrated vision for future directions in the aviation industry.