At Heli-Expo 2017 in Dallas, Texas, Bell Helicopter took the wraps off its first concept aircraft called the FCX-001. Its main features are an airframe made from sustainable materials, a hybrid power system, and an artificial intelligence co-pilot.
It also comes equipped with a tail boom that has an embedded anti-torque system, which the company says will not only improve safety but also reduce noise, as well as increase performance. Another cool feature of the FCX-001 is the morphing rotor blades that are capable of changing their shape under different flight conditions to achieve better performance.
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Meanwhile, you’ll find a single pilot seat inside the helicopter with augmented reality technology and an artificial intelligence computer system, which can replace a co-pilot. The seat layout in the passenger cabin can easily be customized thanks to the modular flooring system, so you can remove a few seats in order to make more room for cargo.
The FCX-001 looks like a very interesting and innovative aircraft, however, do keep in mind that it is still just a concept. This means that it might never go into production and even if it does, we’ll probably have to wait for quite some time before it hits the market. Nevertheless, it’s still nice to see that companies are working on innovative projects that give us a glimpse of how helicopters of the future will look like.