Since the collapse of Airship
Industries in the early 1990's some of the groups main employees
and designers decided to continue with the airship programme and
in 1995 set up a small company named originally, Airship Technologies
later to be known as Advanced
Airship Technologies Group (ATG). The company continued to pressure
the market and proving of airship and hybrid lighter than air
craft. The AT-10 was devised using the advancements as seen in
the Sentinel 1000, a cross configured tail fin was one main advancements
carried forward on the smaller craft.
It was seen that a small pilot
training and advertising vehicle would be needed by the company
before embarking on it's larger projects and the AT-10 fulfilled
that role. The AT-10 is a 4-5 seat commercial airship providing
an advertising and camera platform capability allied to others
uses such as the pilot training.
The ship design moved away
from the earlier skyship configuration. The envelope made of a
laminated translucent fabric and a hull with a external cantenary
collar system supporting the main payload module. A single ballonet
was installed centrally located over the payload module (cabin)
for hull pressure control.
The payload or gondola comprises
of a single structural module with a flight deck comprising of
2 pilot stations and 2 sidestick controls. The passenger compartment
behind the flight deck allows seating for 4 passengers with a
single large door entrance. The passenger seating configuration
can be rearranged for flexible location of equipment.
A small stowage compartment
is also added with a small toilet on board for comfort. The AT-10
also carries a power plant of 2, 100bhp horizontally opposed two
stroke direct injection diesel engines. As with earlier airship
technology, the AT-10 continues to use the fly by wire optical
technology. It also had a flight control system provision for
an auto pilot facility.
The first flight of the AT-10
was on a sunny morning on 28th March 2002 where the ship carried
out her initial trials. Since then the AT-10 has been seen flying
over the Cardington Airfield continuing tests.