A 3D rendering of the Flexible Cabin Laboratory in the Cabin Comfort and Environment Research facility.
The National Research Council of Canada (NRC) is building a new facility to help airlines, original equipment manufacturer suppliers and airframers develop and advance technologies to improve people's air travel experience.
The Cabin Comfort and Environment Research facility will be a unique centre for cabin demonstration, capable of investigating the effects and impact of integration of new cabin designs and technologies on passengers' comfort and travel experience. By assisting industry develop and evaluate new interiors, technologies, and concepts, the centre will explore trade-offs between cabin attributes to identify the most cost-effective and cost-beneficial designs. Focusing on the development of tools that will optimize passenger comfort, the centre will allow industry partners to explore cabin arrangements to reduce operating costs while maximizing operators' revenues.
Passengers at the Cabin Comfort and Environment Research facility will experience a realistic flight environment with a functional aircraft interior, including noise and vibration; food and beverage service; in-flight entertainment; and flight simulation. The state-of-the art centre will include four primary laboratory spaces able to simulate the airport and on-board experience: an airport terminal and gate area, a flexible cabin simulator, a two-storey space suitable for housing large-scale mock-ups or fuselages for clients, and a human-rated vibration platform. Aerospace industry suppliers will be able to demonstrate emerging air cabin environment control technologies, as well as in-flight entertainment and new software designed to enhance the passenger experience. At the same time, they will be able to de-risk and accelerate the development of new technologies that can be transferred to industry.
"This investment is an important step towards responding to the needs of our industrial clients in the fields of lighting, ventilation, noise and vibration control, entertainment systems, and seat technologies," said Jerzy Komorowski, General Manager of Aerospace at the National Research Council of Canada. "The new facility will be a unique technology platform, adding to the impressive portfolio of large-scale research infrastructure that NRC offers its clients and partners, and allowing us to learn a lot more about cabin environments and their effects on the comfort of passengers and aircrew."
The project supports the work of NRC's Working and Travelling on Aircraft (WTA) program, which identifies cost-effective approaches to improve the air traveller experience, improve cabin air quality, and reduce the energy consumption of environmental control systems in military and commercial aircraft.