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3D visualisation for aircraft cabin design

05 July 2015

Ahead of the Paris Airshow in June, Dassault Systèmes released its new 'Passenger Experience' technology - high-end 3D visualisation for the delivery of customised aircraft cabins.

Aircraft modernisation and the retirement of thousands of aircraft over the next decade have led to a strong build cycle in the industry. This is spurring innovation in cabin personalisation as an effective tool for business jet OEMs, suppliers and airlines to differentiate themselves and build customer loyalty.

Based on Dassault Systèmes’ 3DEXPERIENCE platform, Passenger Experience uses high-end 3D visualisation technology and interactive content to transform engineering data into powerful, visual 3D design, marketing and sales applications that address all aspects of the cabin design, from initial customer interaction and design validation and verification, through to marketing campaigns.

Features of the new application include essential intelligent ‘building blocks’ which capture rules, regulations, and manufacturing knowledge to automate cabin interior design, development and delivery. Real-time cabin configuration and immersive cabin validation capabilities are also included to enable quick turnaround time on design configurations, reduce engineering changes and ensure that the final product meets expectations before a physical prototype is created.

The 3D data provide marketing teams with high-end cabin images and videos to promote cabin designs that can be quickly adapted for a wide range of marketing purposes, digital channels and devices, avoiding those costly photo shoots. Michel Tellier, vice president Aerospace & Defence Industry, Dassault Systèmes, concludes:

“Allowing aircraft customers to experience their choices as they make them, to appreciate the beauty, effect, practicality, feasibility, cost and benefit in real time as they make these choices, is a key goal for ‘Passenger Experience’. There is a competitive advantage in bringing maximum harmony between the interior while it is being specified and what will be delivered, and ultimately marketed, to the private or commercial passenger.”

Solar Impulse

Dassault Systèmes’ 3DEXPERIENCE platform has been put to work in other high-profile areas of aviation, most recently with the Solar Impulse team. Along with Dassault Systèmes’ CATIA and ENOVIA applications, 3DEXPERIENCE was used to design, build, and validate the second solar aircraft, Solar Impulse 2, which is currently carrying the mission forward, circumnavigating the globe throughout 2015. Solar Impulse 1 was a test bed for the complex new technologies required to fly day and night using solar energy alone.

The team faced new challenges and trade-offs in designing such an innovative aircraft, including a new design for the fuselage and wings, and using new materials to achieve strict weight objectives. Designing a cockpit providing safety, comfort, and command accessibility for a pilot on an around-the-world flight required sophisticated design and management tools.

“For over a century, pioneers have been pushing the limits of aviation and transforming ideas into ‘firsts,’ from the first human flight to balloon flights and space missions once thought to be impossible,” says André Borschberg, co-founder CEO and pilot, Solar Impulse. “We continue to apply this entrepreneurial spirit to engineering and research programs that blend 21st century technologies like the 3DEXPERIENCE platform with a mission to improve mankind’s impact on the environment.”

“We had to be right the first time. We needed proven, cutting edge industry solutions to craft the experience for which we were looking. That’s why we went to Dassault Systèmes and its 3DEXPERIENCE platform,” says Bertrand Piccard, initiator, chairman and pilot, Solar Impulse. “An experience perspective is exactly what we needed when creating an airplane to achieve such long flights. We’re in the cockpit for five days at a time. Everything, from the propulsion, to the electronics, to the crew facilities needs to be considered, planned, integrated and implemented for such a flight to be successful.”

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