Farnborough Air Show Production
SXS was appointed production partner to In-Frame Media to deliver one of the most unique and demanding exhibits at the 2016 Farnborough International Air Show.
The “Cargo Village” area of the show was to showcase the awesome capabilities of the new Boeing 747-8f as well as the legendary Antonov AN-124 Ruslin. These aircraft have impressive capabilities of lift, travel range, loading style and flexibility. These features were to be demonstrated in a way that would engage and inspire guests, clients and the press.
The Boeing 747
In order to allow Air Show guests to enter safely the aircraft, the SXS team needed to build an entirely new floor in the aircraft. “The floor of the 747-8F cargo aircraft is a series of inverted castor wheels which is highly effective in positioning oversized cargo, but not ideal for pedestrian access” says project director Johnny Palmer. “Our team has an excellent track record providing custom structure flooring solutions: so we were approached to build a bespoke, premium-finish flooring solution which was both safe and allowed clear view of the cargo management systems. We integrated transparent flooring sections to allow a clear view of the floor.” In addition to the floor, the SXS team constructed a high quality meeting room space in the aircraft complete with full AV support and air conditioning.
The Antonov AN-124
For aviation enthusiasts the Antonov AN-124 Ruslin is a legendary aircraft. Originally built in the soviet era it still has an important place in the air cargo industry due to its large load capacity and ability to accept unusual load shapes. For Farnborough the aircraft had to be kitted out with a bespoke meeting room that felt like a premium passenger aircraft. “We had to build a separate monocoque structure to sit within the aircraft” says Palmer. The meeting space benefitted from graphics cladding, air conditioning, false windows, full AV support and bespoke furniture – all designed and provided by SXS.
Logistics & Working in aircraft
With a combined value of well over £500m the aircraft were highly sensitive places to work. An extensive safety management and quality program was put in place to ensure that no damage was caused to the aircraft. As the aircraft were all active working aircraft, any time spent on the ground was a lost revenue opportunity to the operator – which meant that the SXS team had to run split teams working overnight to complete the build.
In addition to the aircraft spaces the SXS team provided extensive marquee structures with flooring, AV, graphics, furniture and other infrastructure. “As the event is an Air Show it was vital that guests could see overhead to experience the demonstrations. We set up marquees with transparent rooves which provided exactly what was needed.”
The finished construction was highly effective in engaging people at the Air Show and the client was very satisfied. The SXS team look forward to working with them again at Paris Air Show in 2017 and Farnborough in 2018.