Carpets, Overhead luggage bins & Passenger Service Units
Carpets and Floor Covering
The passenger cabin floors are covered with panels of fitted flame-resistant, carpet with the pile lay facing aft. Concorde stretches up to 20cm during flights because its airframe heats up – the carpets on the plane have to be designed with this in mind.
This stretched carpet is secured with double sided adhesive tape and the edges are held in place by seat rail covers and carpet trapping strips. Any untapped carpet has been lightly coated with adhesive to prevent any fraying. Extruded plastic covers which push into the seat rail slots trap the nap of the carpet either side of each rail.
There are five separate carpet access flaps in the aircraft. Two of these, give access to the nose undercarriage emergency release (221RF) and the main Landing gear emergency release and observation access (233BF), and these are secured as indicated on the illustration below, for further reading visit the “Landing Gear” section of this website. The other three which are, the nose undercarriage observation access (221YF) and access panels (223FF and 231HF) are secured using double sided tape.The carpet flaps fold back when access is required by the crew, or ground engineers.
The vestibule floors are covered with decorative flame-resistant PVC which is on a woven fabric base over foam under- Lay. This PVC has been tailored to the vestibule area and is held in position with double sided adhesive tape, carpet trapping strips and threshold plates. An escutcheon plate finishes the edge of the PVC at the tread plate of each doorway.
Plates have been positioned over each floor expansion joint to ensure that the carpet does not become damaged in these areas.
The last carpets fitted to the Air France Concorde fleet was designed by Andrée Putman, and in the case of BA fleet of five operational Concordes, they received new carpets as part of the interior upgrades in 2001. This resign was carried out by
The London based design agency ‘Factory Design’ and Terence Conran as part of the ‘Project Rocket’ BA Concorde interior upgrades.
Cleaning of the Carpets
Carpets should be cleaned by brushing or vacuum cleaning. A more extensive cleaning may be achieved by shampooing but the carpet must be removed from the aircraft. Where shampooing is to be carried out the-carpet must be re-flame-proofed and re-treated with anti-static agents.
In certain flight conditions of low humidity, a build-up of static electricity could occur resulting in persons receiving a static charge when touching metal objects. Precautions could be taken to minimise this effect by treating aircraft carpets in order to make them more moisture absorbent. The agents were applied by spray in an aqueous solution. Carpets had to be removed from the aircraft before this treatment was carried out.
In order to restore the flame-resistance to the carpets, the carpet had to be thoroughly dried and then immersed in a solution, made up by dissolving 5 lbs (2.3 kg) of Borax and 5 lbs (2.3 kg) of Boric acid into 10 gallons (45.4 litres) of clean water. They had to thoroughly wet the carpet and allow it to air dry.
Overhead Luggage Stowage Bins
The overhead luggage bins are rigid lightweight containers of a fibreglass sandwich construction with metal pivot centres; there are hydraulic dampers and latches which pivoted to the end panels. There is a moulded plastic handle in the centre of the bin that is connected to the Latches by cables. At the back of the bin there is a net that closes off the space between the bin and the sidewall and thus prevents the dislodgement of magazines or small articles when the bin is raised by the passenger.
The arrangement of the bins in the aircraft has been governed by the aircraft bulkhead positions and the spaces between the feature brackets. Support between the bins is provided by a small intermediate bracket.
Most of these are spaced at regular intervals and accommodate two bins, but some bins can vary in Length depending on the seating configuration. The difference in Length between them is Large enough to eliminate the possibility of fitting a bin in the wrong position.
At the outer ends of each pair of bins, the mechanism is covered by a plastic fairing which gives the bins a Left-hand and right-hand fitting. Any bin can be interchanged with any other bin of corresponding Length and hand.
Some of the stowage bins on the Left-hand side of the aircraft incorporate a cabin temperature sensor unit. Each bin housing a sensor unit is identified by a small grille on the bin bottom surface and these bins can only be interchanged with bins of a similar type.
To open the luggage bin, you have to place your fingers in the recess in the handle and press with the thumb on the Lower edge. This action releases the latches and allows the luggage bin to open. The rate of descent for the bin is regulated by the hydraulic dampers which buffer the weight when the bin is loaded with baggage. To close the bin, push upwards until the bin latches in the closed position.
The maximum allowable baggage weight is stated on the bin placard which is located inside at the bin rear
Passenger Service Units
The passenger service units are installed in panels directly below the overhead stowage bins and are arranged so that each unit panel is aligned with each passenger seat unit. Each panel houses a fresh air manifold which has two controllable louvre outlets, two reading light assemblies with associated push-button switches, and a push-button steward call switch and an oxygen mask stowage which also has a therapeutic oxygen point.
Each panel has quick-release couplings to its services to facilitate removal and installation. The panel fasteners lock on the outboard support rail and are accessible only when the air vane and fairing has been lowered. Panels can be positioned to suit any seating configuration.
Speakers and sign displays are installed in panels at intervals along the aircraft cabin below the overhead luggage stowage bins and in line with the passenger service units.
The panels are used for broadcasts from a crew member or hostess. Each unit comprises of a panel, a speaker which is secured by screws to the sloping surface, two filament lamps positioned behind the“NO SMOKING” and “FASTEN SEAT BELT” signs, and the speaker transformer positioned at the forward end.
Excess cable are stored on the upper surface of the filament lamps cover by the means of hook and loop tape. The panels on the left-hand and right-hand side of the aircraft are similar but handed differently.