Our team returned from the National Business Aviation Association 2018 Expo with some noteworthy insights to share. It is part of our ethos to track and understand advancements in varied industries in order to leverage those learnings in programs for our clients.


If you have any questions, or would like to talk to one of our product development experts, contact us.



truly revolutionary the future is here

Terrafugia’s Transition is pitched as the world’s first practical flying car. Its wings fold and unfold, moving from road-ready driving machine to flight ready in under a minute.

Image: https://terrafugia.com/transition/


Terrafugia’s TF-2 is a 3-part piloted mobility machine. It aims to make a passenger’s commute truly seamless, eliminating any need to change vehicles between ground and air travel.


fresh tech solutions that stood out

Bose’s new lightweight Active Noise Reduction (ANR) headset, the ProFlight Aviation headset, features a sleek form factor and boasts more than 30 US design and utility patents.

photo: https://www.bose.com/en_us/products/headphones/aviation_headsets/proflight-aviation-headset.html


Gulfstream has received an industry-first approval from the FAA giving aircraft operators authorization to dispatch and begin instrument approaches in low-visibility conditions below the published approach minima using its Enhanced Flight Vision System. The system will be integrated into its fleet of in-production aircraft.

photo: http://www.gulfstream.com/product-support/product-enhancements/enhanced-vision-system

Spencer Aircraft's Folding Electric Bike enables pilots to avoid waiting for a cab and zip away at 20mph and up to 38 miles when using pedal assist. The bike is foldable for easy storage in a carry-on case.


The Echo is a ride-on electric aircraft tug packed with high-tech features, including touch screens, built in radios, power steering and a wireless winch.

Lee Aerospace’s CoolView window technology reduces infrared rays up to 82.4% and eliminates almost all harmful UV rays, resulting in a much cooler cabin and preservation of the interior of the aircraft.  Because the windows are engineered with an advanced thin metallic composite barrier system within the window, the barrier will be effective for a lifetime.

photo: http://www.gulfstream.com/product-support/product-enhancements/enhanced-vision-system

image: https://leeaerospace.com/coolview-aircraft-windows-reduces-cabin-heat-block-harmful-rays/

The Scalamobil uses its electric motor to help lift people who are unable to climb stairs into a business aircraft with very little effort needed by the person assisting.

Video: Max-Ability, Inc.

F/LIST is the first fully certifiable real stone heated flooring with integrated heating for business jet cabins.

image: https://f-list.at/Content/uploads/2015/05/moodley-brand-identity_f-list_flist_stoneflooring_factsheet.pdf


The upgraded Iridium constellation is extending the reach of terrestrial and cellular infrastructure for aviation applications. Iridium Certus is the new platform enabled by the upgraded Iridium constellation and may be available mid-2019 for aviation users.

FlexExec is a connectivity service running on an Intelsat KU-band satellite network dedicated to business aviation. The service has a unique power-by-the hour program available for owners and operators to pay for service and hardware.

The SwiftBroadband-Safety Satcoms by Cobham Aerospace Communications presented the only Imarsat SB-S approved system for business jets, enabling real-time flight data sharing.

Flight tracking over remote regions like rainforests and oceans hasn’t been possible previously. FlightAware and Aireon partnered to deliver the first, truly global solution with the Aireon space-based ADS-B, providing at least one position every minute, anywhere in the world.


The Spike S-512 is anticipating its first flight in 2021 and will fly at Mach 1.6; 450 mph faster than any other civilian aircraft. A patent-pending Quiet Supersonic Flight technology will enable silent flight.

Video: Spike Aerospace


Aerion is working with academic, government and agency partners to enable supersonic travel over land without the sonic boom reaching the ground. The Aerion AS2 supersonic business jet is expected to fly in 2023 and complete certification in 2025.

Video videos of the Aerion AS2 at https://www.aerionsupersonic.com/

NASA awarded Lockheed Martin Skunk Works a contract in February 2016 for the preliminary design of the X-59, with a goal of making supersonic flight’s sonic boom into to a gentle thump.

image: https://www.lockheedmartin.com/en-us/products/quesst.html


Garmin’s GHD 2100 heads up display is Garmin’s first original equipment HUD and is an option for the Textron Cessna Citation Longitude.

image: https://buy.garmin.com/en-US/US/p/151152


MyGoFlight’s SkyDisplay heads up display (HUD) delivers the content enjoyed by large business jet pilots in the pilot’s field of view when looking out the plane’s window.

The SkyLens tracks movements in the user's eyes to see what they are looking at for a wide-vision wearable heads up display. A line of sight curser can be used to select a runway and automatically update a flight plan and automatically couple to the autopilot.

image: https://mgfproducts.com/hud

Video: AIN TV

it's electric! ELECTRIC AIRCRAFT

Bye Electric has its eyes on a more efficient and cost-effective method for short-range air taxi service and pilot training uses. They have a 2 seater Sun Flyer 2 prototype, which can make training more affordable as it drastically reduces fuel charges, and are now looking at working on a 4 seater electric craft for on-demand air transport.


Safran unveiled its ENGINeUS 45 motor, its first electric motor for electric and hybrid concepts. This announcement was made on the heels of Zunum Aero choosing Safran to provide a new-generation engine turbine for its 12 seat ZA10 hybrid-to-electric aircraft.


Bongiovi Aviation’s Speakerless Audio System delivers a uniform, immersive sound experience with patented Bongiovi DPS signal processing technology. Transducers attached to the backside of aircraft interior panels eliminate the need for speakers, woofers and subwoofers.


Jetbed’s inflatable, portable bed can be set up on the floor or between opposing seats to make a mattress customized to the passengers’ liking - from soft to extra firm.


Sky Style’s concept for the Boeing Max 7 interior is curvy and inviting, yet practical.

The Astronics PGA Nuancia system enables passengers the ability to adjust lighting, which is especially useful in reproducing specific time-of-day lighting in order to avoid the effects of jetlag.

Image: http://www.skystyle-design.com/



The Cessna Denali is single engine turboprop on schedule to fly in 2019. It offers a ‘jet-like’ experience, with large windows and a flat floor.

photo: https://cessna.txtav.com/en/turboprop/denali


Embraer’s Praetor 500 midsize and Preator 600 super-midsize are the only business jets in their categories to feature full fly-by-wire technology and active turbulence reduction.

photo: https://cessna.txtav.com/en/turboprop/denali

Cirrus Aircraft’s SF50 is a jet designed to be flown by the owner, a unique machine for personal transportation. Smart safety features are integrated; the SF50 is the only business jet that includes an emergency parachute.

photo: https://cirrusaircraft.com/aircraft/vision-jet/

Duncan Aviation brought a Dornier 328-310 - one of only eleven Envoy 3 models in the world. The cabin interior was designed by Robin Dunlop, and is configured with 12 executive club seats, four crew seats, and six inflatable beds.

photo: https://www.duncanaviation.aero/news/duncan-aviation-features-one-of-a-kind-dornier-328jet-envoy-3-at-nbaa-static-display

state of the industry

There was much talk at the show of a looming business aviation pilot shortage, spurred by competitive commercial jobs and an increase in hiring by freight companies.

FAA is initiating two rulemaking activities on civil supersonic aircraft noise. The first activity is a proposed rule for noise certification of supersonic aircraft, and the second is a proposed rule to streamline and clarify the procedures to obtain special flight authorization for conducting supersonic flight testing in the United States.

Aerospace data generation is growing exponentially thanks to onboard sensors and digitized operations.

Aerial ridesharing is a front-of-mind topic for manufacturers, service providers and even Uber, as people increasingly look for on-demand, real-time short commuter flights.




Contributors: Gil Cavada, George Guffey, Erik Moses, Nicole Byer, Jake Vail, John Hannon

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