Assystem Technologies is working on the design and development of the LCA60T from FLYING WHALES, according to the company it is one of today’s most revolutionary aerospace initiatives.
The LCA60T is able to transport heavy loads in places where road infrastructures are not sufficient or lacking all together, namely in inaccessible and remote areas of the world. The project has received private funding in 2016 and 2017, strengthening its capabilities.
The development and design of this solution will enable the increase of large volumes of timber extraction from land-locked areas. This solution will also offer low operating cost and almost no environmental impact.
The LCA60T is a 150 meter long airship - the size of a 1.5 football fields with a height equivalent to a twelve floor building that is able to carry 60 tons in its bunker or under-slung. Originally launched in 2013, the programme stemmed from challenges with the French trade deficit in the timber sector.
Despite the availability of resources, the industry faced challenges in accessing and transporting the materials to less accessible areas of the country and needed a long term solution. Consequently, Assystem Technologies accompany FLYING WHALES to develop a cost effective mode of aerial transportation that is able to transport large volumes of heavy materials.
The LCA60T project is highly innovative at its core. Assystem Technologies consulted FLYING WHALES on adapting an innovative stereolithographic method to ensure safety. This visionary method steered away from the traditional aerospace practices, where segments of the aircraft are assembled.
The major benefit of the stereolithographic approach is that all operations are made at ‘chest height‘ between 1.80 and 12 meters. “This approach secures and facilitates the operations which means less time to fully assemble - meaning enhanced efficiencies” highlighted David Fiorina, Vice-President Aerodefense, Assystem Technologies.
Sebastien Bougon, Founder of FLYING WHALES commented on the collaboration: “Assystem Technologies’ team imagined the LCA60T assembly line and provided us with a turnkey service. As a result we’ve developed intelligent solutions that serve greatly the path of the programme.”
The programme will target the large market of transportation and logistics in countries with transport infrastructure deficit. The industrial production launch is planned for 2022 with the objective of producing at least 150 units in the first ten years of exploitation.