PARIS – French company FLYING WHALES, and Groupe ADF, an internationally-renowned provider of industrial engineering and production services, signed an exclusive industrial and financial partnership at the Paris Air Show this week. The partnership provides for the construction of an airship interface system (the Airdock) for take-off and docking operations, maintenance and ground maneuvers.
FLYING WHALES’ future aircraft will be capable of transporting up to 60 metric tons in weight and will measure 40 meters in height and 154 m in length. The new system will be specifically tailored to the airship’s dimensions and energy transmission to ensure exceptional docking performances. Groupe ADF will provide end-to-end solutions for designing, developing, validating and producing these systems.
Created by Groupe ADF, the Airdock is a 30-meter high mobile superstructure. It was designed in response to operational constraints, to ensure the airship remains in position during take-off and landing and to enable it to be moved between the storage hangar and launch pad.
During such maneuvers, the mobile Airdock preserves the structural integrity of the airship, which may be subjected to considerable transitory stresses. During such times, the Airdock will also be able to communicate automatically with its surrounding environment (building, aircraft, pilot, ground support) and capture data on daily weather conditions to guarantee the security of equipment and people during these maneuvers.
“We are delighted to be joining forces with FLYING WHALES in the creation of a new business sector, and one which is destined for strong growth. Until now, the airship sector had been unable to find a commercial outlet. This situation has changed, with airships offering a host of advantages to meet the needs of the timber industry. Other applications could subsequently emerge and the market is extremely promising.” adds Marc Eliayan, CEO of Groupe ADF.