Flight Design Safety Box Development

April 11, 2014
The German Ministry of Economic Affairs has granted funding for a research project that aims at development of a modular "SafetyBox" cabin safety system for light aircraft.

Friedrichshafen, GERMANY (AERO Fair)  / 10 April 2014 - With a project starting date in Summer 2013, the German Ministry of Economic Affairs has granted funding for a research project that aims at development of a modular "SafetyBox" cabin safety system for light aircraft. The new system will provide a safety cage around the occupants of an aircraft, whose functionality builds upon an integrated consideration of several elements, namely intelligently designed and located crash absorber elements, stiff cabin structure with dedicated load paths for the majority of crash scenarios, seat installation and restraint systems. This is significantly supported by crash-optimized ergonomic designs and enhanced fire protection concepts.

The concept goes significantly beyond current aircraft designs, where the certification requirements plainly ask for consideration of certain crash accelerations to the seat and restraint system, regardless of the capability and level of energy absorption of the surrounding fuselage cell. With the new approach selected in this research program, the SafetyBox project team is optimizing the interaction of all the available elements in the early design phase of an aircraft. This will lead to a system of multiple modular elements that subsequently can be tailored to multiple applications in various aircraft designs. With this, the SafetyBox team is leading a path that is fully in line with the intentions of the current Part 23 re-write activity, jointly driven by all major Aviation Authorities, aircraft industry and aircraft users.

The SafetyBox project team has selected Flight Design's new C4 aircraft as the first aircraft for the  application of the system. Development times of the SafetyBox system match naturally with the development times of the C4 project, which makes this a natural initial project. The full development will culminate in full scale crash testing of a completed aircraft under controlled conditions, planned for Summer 2015, to validate the superior suitability of the new system. The system is designed as a modular system and will be offered to other aircraft manufacturers on the market, application is not limited to Flight Design products.

The funding has been granted by the German Ministry of Economic Affairs within the ZIM initiative and was granted through AiF as the responsible executive organization. The application activity was launched by NorLiN Northern Lightweight Design Network of Hamburg, and involves the development partners Autoflug GmbH, Flight Design GmbH, Silence Aircraft GmbH, Titan Präcis Metallurgie GmbH, HAW Hamburg - Department Fahrzeugtechnik und Flugzeugbau together with iDS Hamburg, and Faserinstitut e.V (FIBRE). The project is coordinated by Faserinstitut Bremen e.V. (FIBRE)

Flight Design is presenting this project with displays at Booth 101 - Hall B1 at AERO Friedrichshafen. Airframe manufacturers interested in applying the system are kindly invited to visit the booth, or may contact directly Faserinstitut Bremen e.V., Mr. Christian Brauner ([email protected]) or NorLiN, Mr. Lothar Schulte for further information.


Autoflug GmbH

AUTOFLUG GmbH is a highly specialised supplier to the international aerospace and defence market and develops, manufactures and maintains a variety of textile, mechanical and electronic components and subsystems. More than 90-year experience in occupant safety systems makes Autoflug GmbH to a leading company of that market, which now incorporates into the SafetyBox System.

More information can be obtained through AUTOFLUG GmbH, Industriestrasse 10 - 25462 Rellingen, Germany, www.autoflug.com, [email protected].

Flight Design GmbH

Flight Design is a 26-year-old manufacturer of light airplanes based in Germany. The newest product currently under development will feature the SafetyBox occupant protection system.

More information can be obtained through Flight Design GmbH, Zum Tower 4, 01917 Kamenz, Germany, www.flightdesign.com, [email protected].

NorLiN - Northern Lightweight Design Network NorLiN is a federation of small and medium-sized enterprises and research institutes, located in Northern Germany. The goal of the network is to initiate research projects in the field of lightweight design and to acquire public funding.

More information can be obtained through NorLiN, Deichstrasse 23, 20459 Hamburg, Germany, www.norlin.info, [email protected].

Silence Aircraft GmbH

Silence Aircraft is an independent SME company and is specialized on lightweight aircraft development since 2002. SILENCE is the manufacturer of the TWISTER, single seat, light aircraft for general aviation. SILENCE offers composite development, CNC milling, Molding and aircraft building, and presents new lightweight innovations and masters new technical challenges in automotive, rail, naval and aircraft industries As a member of the SafetyBox group SILENCE will produce SafetyBox components for the application on the C4 and other aircraft.

More information can be obtained through Silence Aircraft GmbH, Kapellenweg 54a, 33415 Verl, Germany, www. silence-aircraft.de, [email protected].

Titan Präcis Metallurgie GmbH

Titan Präcis Metallurgie GmbH is active as an innovative company since 1993 in the area of surface coating. The company acts as service provider for surface coating to enhance the wear and corrosion resistance as well as the thermal stability of material and components, and is specialized to established technologies like Plasma spraying, arc spraying, flame gunning and high velocity oxygen fuel spraying. The existing know-how was used in the past to coat composite aircraft components to successfully enhance the corrosion and wear resistance (sand erosion, hail erosion, |). This experience will be used within the SafetyBox project to apply high temperature resistant coating to the carbon fiber materials, where required.

More information can be obtained through Titan Präcis Metallurgie GmbH, Brahmkoppel 1A, 24558 Henstedt-Ulzburg, Germany, www.titan-praecis.de, [email protected].

HAW Hamburg - Department Fahrzeugtechnik und Flugzeugbau With over 16,000 students Hamburg University of Applied Sciences is the second largest institution of higher education in the Hamburg region and one of the largest university of applied sciences in Germany. In the Department of Automotive and Aeronautical Engineering various research projects for aircraft structures are under way, one being the SafetyBox project.

More information can be obtained through HAW Hamburg - Department Fahrzeugtechnik und Flugzeugbau, Berliner Tor 9 (Haus C), 20099 Hamburg, Germany, www.haw-hamburg.de/ti-ff.

iDS Hamburg

The new safety standard of a safety-box has to come along with a high-class cockpit- and ergonomic-design, as a central factor in terms of fatigue-proof flying and obviating mistakes.

Among the optimization of view field, control panel and aspects of human factors, the complete workplace of the pilots has to be considered. iDS Hamburg is an Industrial Design Studio, since 1984 working in the fields of transportation and product design.

More information can be obtained through iDS Hamburg GmbH & Co KG, Schleestraße 12, 22767 Hamburg, Germany, www.ids-hamburg.com, [email protected].

Faserinstitut Bremen e.V. (FIBRE)

Faserinstitut Bremen e.V. (FIBRE) is active in the development, processing and testing of fibers and fiber reinforced composites since 1969. Today the institute works successfully together with national and international research partners and industry partners in the field of carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP), often for applications in the aircraft industry. Main topics are the development of automated, economic and robust manufacturing technologies, simulation of material behavior (i.e. drapeability, shock-waves and curing-cycles) as well as characterization of new materials. One main focus of the research work is the development of automatic or continuous manufacturing processes for complex formed CFRP components (e.g. spherical or curved profiles, thermoformed 3-dimensional parts), which will be desired for current and future CFRP fuselage projects in numbers of thousands per year.

More information can be obtained through Faserinstitut e.V. (FIBRE), Am Biologischen Garten 2, 28359 Bremen, Germany, www.faserinstitut.de, [email protected].

Zentrales Innovationsprogramm Mittelstand (ZIM) More information on ZIM can be obtained through www.zim-bmwi.de.

AiF Arbeitsgemeinschaft industrieller Forschungsvereinigungen |Otto von Guericke" e.V.

More information on AiF can be obtained through www.aif.de.