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Identifying the ideal site for a unique aviation R&D facility

Airbus Testing Facility, Bristol
Airbus testing facility hero

Identifying the perfect site to develop out a unique aviation testing facility that could be future-proofed to meet advances in landing gear.




Filton, Bristol

Service Lines

Airbus, the renowned aircraft manufacturer, required a unique testing facility for the landing gear system for its new A350 aircraft.

Two prerequisites for the facility were the identification of a suitable site and a structural design that included both the space to test the rig itself, as well as the associated office, workshop and recreational areas. The design also needed to take into consideration the testing of future equipment, the specific requirements of which could not be determined at the design stage.

In collaboration with architect Stride Treglown, Hydrock was appointed to undertake the outline design and specification of the superstructure, the substructure and storm and foul water drainage.

As part of the design process, detailed assessments of several potential locations were undertaken, including the development of initial foundation schemes from each, so that robust comparisons could be made in order to achieve a best value solution.

The build programme was absolutely critical, as the installation of the complex rig structure had been prearranged to allow for the testing schedule. The steel frame was designed specifically around the tight programme, allowing the build to finish on time.

Key to this project’s success are the strong relationship and collaborative working Hydrock enjoys with Airbus. By truly understanding the detailed processes and requirements of the facility, we were able to design a structural solution to fit the bespoke needs of our client, whilst avoiding over-specification and consequential increases in cost.

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