"Airbus is continuously investigating parallel and complementary solutions such as infrastructure, flight operations and aircraft structure. With this demonstrator, we will make significant strides in active control technology through research and applied testing of various technologies inspired by biomimicry," says Sabine Klauke, Airbus Chief Technical Officer.
Similar to how an eagle flies by adapting the shape, span, and surface of its wings, this demonstrator will allow for increased flight efficiency. To facilitate active control of the wing, several tech elements will be evaluated. These include pop-up spoilers or plates that are rapidly deflected perpendicular to airflow, gust sensors, multifunctional trailing edges that dynamically modify wing surface in flight, and a semi-aeroelastic hinge.
The demonstrator is hosted within Airbus' subsidiary Airbus UpNext, which focuses on accelerating the development of future technologies by building demonstrators at a rapid pace and scale in order to evaluate, mature, and validate potential new products and services involving radical technological advancements.
The new program's extra-performing wing also adds to the Airbus' "Wing of Tomorrow" project, which aims to develop new manufacturing methods for essential wing elements, such as wing box lower covers, flaps, and spoiler and droop panels. The final goal is to create complex components in a more efficient and cost-effective manner.