Odds and Ends: Retrofit interior for 737, A320; CRJ200F; CSeries FTV assembly starts
Retrofit Interior for 737: Heath Tecna, an interiors firm, is offering a Boeing-like Sky Interior design for retrofit with a target market of more than 3,000 Boeing 737NGs. APEX magazine’s Mary Kirby (formerly of Flight Global) has this story. The photos show the Heath Tecna design is remarkably similar to the Boeing Sky Interior. The difference, Kirby quotes a company official, is this: “The biggest difference between the two interiors can be found in the bag capacity offered. With Project Amber, we can increase the amount of bags that can be stowed on a typical Boeing 737-800NG by 40%. And we’re able to do that because our patent pending design offers a little larger pivot bin in a unique configuration.”
When Boeing announced the Sky Interior in April 2009, we asked if a retrofit would be offered for the 737 fleet and the answer was that while technically it could be, there were no plans to do so. When we saw the same official at an event in August, we posed the question again and the answer was the same.
Heath Techna, a subsidiary of Zodiac, is an interior supplier. It’s also offering a modern, retro-interior for the Airbus A320.
CRJ200F: Cargo conversion company AEI Inc. is exploring a passenger-to-freight cargo conversion for the Bombardier CRJ200F. From the press release:
The CRJ200 LCD aircraft would provide operators with a freighter capable of hauling a maximum payload of 6.7 tonnes. The freighter would come equipped with an Ancra cargo loading system capable of hauling pallets, containers or bulk loaded material. The Main Deck Cargo Door will be 94” (2.39 m) wide by 77” (1.96 m) high and feature AEI’s proven hydraulic actuation and latching systems which has been installed on more than 370 freighters.
Additional features include:
- Up to 6.7 tonne payload
- Total Cabin Volume of 1864 cu ft (52.8 cu m)
- 10,000 lb (4 536 kg) payload can be flown 1,735 nm
- 15,000 lb (6 804 kg) payload can be flown 800 nm
- Dual vent door system
- Rigid 9G barrier
- Main deck converted to Class “E” Cargo Compartment
- Cabin windows replace with lightweight aluminum window plugs
CSeries Assembly: CSeries Flight Test Vehicle 1 (FTV 1) assembly has begun. The Wall Street Journal has this story about the compressed schedule. Reuters has this story. Bombardier hopes to meet its plan of first flight by the end of this year, but has been telegraphing a three-six month slip. A customer we talked with thinks first flight will be in April. Bombardier’s 3Q earnings call in November 4; we expect a schedule update then. Aviation Week has these pictures.