Imagine boarding a corporate jet with a few coworkers. You all settle into your seats and start talking business. Then, without warning, a sunroof opens along the entire length of the plane. You suddenly have tons of natural light streaming in and a clear view of the blue sky above. Sound too amazing to be true? Well, think again.
It would appear as though Airbus has come up with a brand-new interior design for its ACJ319neo corporate jet, a design that includes a simulated sunroof. No, they haven’t built an extra pane of glass into the roof that you can flip open with a hand crank. But they have come up with a digital version. The roof of this aircraft is outfitted with a high-tech screen that can project any number of images, including live views of the sky.
Much of what makes the new cabin possible are the composite materials Airbus chose for its design. The cabin features a heavy dose of carbon fiber along with a carbon-titanium hybrid provided by Pagani. This comes as no surprise. Aerospace companies rely more heavily on composite materials with each new design.
The Amazing Digital Ceiling
We will get to the carbon fiber in a minute. First though, we really need to talk about the plane’s amazing digital ceiling. After all, it is the main feature. It is also the one feature destined to grab passenger attention on future flights.
The ceiling is essentially a digital screen that runs the length of the passenger cabin. It is a lot like a TV screen in terms of function, but it has been manufactured to follow the curved surface of the plane’s fuselage. The screen is connected to a digital media system through which crew determine the images it plays.
Allowing the crew to make the most of the screen are exterior cameras that provide the same view of the sky one would get if the screen were actually a pane of glass. Thus, you have a simulated sunroof that can really change the in-flight experience.
For the record, the technology is not new. Nor did it originate with Airbus. Cruise ships have employed it to create virtual portholes for a couple of years now. You can see the technology deployed in amusement park rides, 360 theaters, simulators, and so on.
Carbon Fiber All Around
Digital ceiling aside, the cabin of the redesigned Airbus ACJ319neo is pretty impressive in its use of carbon fiber. Salt Lake City’s Rock West Composites explains that carbon fiber is a material of choice for aerospace manufacturers because of its strength-to-weight ratio. The material is considerably lighter than aluminum and steel while being stronger and somewhat easier to work with.
Take a seat in the new ACJ319neo and you’ll discover that carbon fiber is all around. For starters, all of the seat frames and backs are carbon fiber. You will also see carbon fiber cabinets, wall frames, and decorative elements on the walls. Even the dining and conference tables are made of carbon fiber.
All of that carbon fiber gives designers an opportunity to load a lot more into this plane without drastically increasing weight. It doesn’t hurt that carbon fiber parts can be engineered in such a way as to give them a very modern, space-age look. Pictures show just how sleek and sophisticated the plane’s cabin really is.
If you have ever wanted to fly in a corporate jet with a sunroof, you now have the chance to enjoy a fantastic simulation. Just book the Airbus ACJ319neo for your next corporate outing.