A Portuguese consortium including executive aircraft manufacturer Embraer has won a 2020 International Design Awards Gold prize in the Transport Design category for a modular and remotely piloted aircraft concept called “FLEXCRAFT.” The concept describes an aircraft that can land and take off on short lanes and use alternative energy sources, and is part of a collaboration intended to innovate ideas that transform future air mobility by combining human, technological, social, and economical aspects in a sustainable manner.
IDA highlighted in particular the FLEXCRAFT passenger experience, made possible by “flexibility of fuselage design and new technologies.” IDA Design Awards in general exist to “recognize, celebrate, and promote legendary design visionaries and to uncover emerging talent in architecture, interior, product, graphic, and fashion design.”
Transforming Future Air Mobility
Embraer says the FLEXCRAFT concept addresses a number of potential usage scenarios, including passenger and cargo transportation, support for civil protection activities, surveillance, aeromedical evacuation, and agriculture. According to FLEXCRAFT’s IDA entry description, the aircraft combines a simple cabin reconfiguration with STOL (short take-off and landing) capability for a variety of missions. The project explored three scenarios, including transport of a multimodal cargo pod for logistics operations, airborne deployment for search and rescue operations, and hub feeder transportation for general aviation operations based on regional airports and hub and spoke transport.
Both Embraer Portugal and Embraer SA (Brazil) are part of the Portuguese consortium, which is led by Sociedade de Engenharia e Transformação. The Portugal 2020 program funded the project under the Operational Program Competitiveness and Internationalization through the European Regional Development Fund.
“This award is a recognition of Embraer and all partners efforts, innovation, and scientific research for this conceptual project, which points out opportunities and paths for the transformation of future air mobility,” says Maurílio Albanese Novaes Júnior, Embraer’s head of research and technology development.
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Posted On: 4/12/2021 12:22:22 PM