Aurora Flight Sciences has been awarded a six-month USD2.9 million contract from NASA for continued development of the company´s D8 aircraft, a subsonic commercial airliner that is a candidate for demonstration in NASA´s new X-plane program, the company said.
The D8 is a commercial aircraft concept that enables efficiency improvements offering increased fuel efficiency of 50 percent. The D8 evolved from Aurora´s work on the NASA N+3 Program.
In 2015, the FAA selected the D8 for design development under its Continuous Lower Energy, Emissions and Noise Program (CLEEN II).
In its FY2017 budget, NASA introduced the New Aviation Horizons program to test a series of X-planes capable of demonstrating significant reductions in fuel consumption, community noise impacts, and air quality impacts. The contract award to Aurora will help mature the D8 as a possible X-plane candidate that supports NASA´s ultra efficient subsonic transport thrust.
Aurora Flight Sciences is a technology company, which develops autonomous systems focused on technology and robotic aviation.