“Innovation has always been part of our DNA and we are living in a very exciting period with all these new technologies coming."By Tomasz Krysinski, SVP, Research & Innovation, Airbus Helicopters
Airbus Helicopters’ innovation targets are focused on three key axes,Tomasz Krysinski says: Improvements in quality and safety; cost-efficiency; and customer satisfaction.
He shared some of the latest examples of this approach. One is Eagle (Eye for Autonomous Guidance and Landing Extension) which federates the helicopter’s image processing functions and feeds them into the avionics system, improving the crew’s situation awareness and enabling autonomous approaches, take-off and landing.
He highlighted another “breakthrough concept” – the Airbus Racer hybrid helicopter, which flies “50% faster” than traditional helicopters, but at a lower cost. Airbus’ ‘flying taxi’, CityAirbus, is another strand of the company's strategy to “change transportation”.
“Environment is at the heart of our work,” Krysinskic said.
For example, the Racer’s ‘eco-mode’ offers 30% less fuel burn, he said, due to its ‘eco-mode’ which allows ‘start and stop’ of one engine in flight, generating fuel savings and increasing range. Further, CityAirbus is a fully electric-powered aircraft.