Originally inaugurated in 1972, the Aviation Hall has received a complete makeover in line with the motto“Switzerland in the air!”. The original hall ranked amongst the largest permanent aviation exhibitions inEurope. From A for Agusta helicopter to Z for Zeppelin, the new featured exhibition covers all aspects ofaviation, including passenger and cargo air transport activities, light aviation, air sports, air rescueservices, and the vocational opportunities related to aeronautics and aviation. This year finds AeroSuisse, the Swiss aviation and aerospace federation, celebrating its 50th anniversary, and the Pro AeroFoundation, which promotes Swiss aviation, marking its 80th anniversary. Reason enough for the SwissMuseum of Transport to devote its next featured exhibition to flying in Switzerland.
Zeppelin simulator takes a bow
Collaborating with innovative project partners, the museum has developed a Zeppelin NT simulator fromscratch, designed to take visitors on a thrilling research mission. It forms part of the newly created sectiontitled “Lighter Than Air”, which also has an original passenger gondola from the Zeppelin NT “Baden-Württemberg” on display. Other exhibits include a hot air balloon basket for 20 passengers – one of thelargest in Europe – and the gondola from the Breitling Orbiter 2, in which Bertrand Piccard made hissecond attempt to circumnavigate the globe.
How does an aero engine work?
The section titled Aircraft Engines spotlights unique artefacts from the museum’s collection. In partnershipwith aero engine manufacturer Pratt & Whitney, this part of the exhibition traces the history of the jetengine. Easy-to-understand animations show how engines work and how they are being made quieterand more economical.
360° tour of an aeroplane
Switzerland’s national carrier Swiss has brought every aspect of its thematic display in the Aviation Hallup to date. Younger visitors are able to discover the fascination of aviation thanks to a fun new visitorexperience; they can register for a flight at a check-in desk or use an intercom phone. There’s informationon the construction of a Boeing 777 and the development of cutlery for use in an aeroplane, and visitorscan view the Bombardier C Series aeroplane thanks to a virtual 360° tour.
Air traffic control
The highlight of the thematic display is an animated game in the exhibition area which turns the visitorinto a virtual air traffic controller. It involves visitors walking on a floor projection some 50 square metresin size and guiding the aeroplanes through the airspace with their own feet. Created in collaboration withSwitzerland’s air traffic control service provider ‘skyguide’, the attraction includes a striking relief map ofSwitzerland featuring projections of live flight data, airport information, airspaces and airways.
A look back at an airport
The redesign of the Aviation Hall includes a series of models of aircraft tracing the history of aviation from its early days to the present. Older visitors will experience a pang of nostalgia on seeing the historical model of Zurich Airport and the colourful uniforms worn by Swissair’s passenger service personnel in 1968. Meanwhile over in the outdoor Arena, 26 portraits of pilots skirt the boating lake and a pushback tractor contributes to the airport ambience.
Swiss Aero-Club, Aerosuisse, Air Force Center, Alpine Rettung Schweiz, Aurora Swiss Aerospace – A BoeingCompany, BATT Suisse, Bernapark, Breitling, Edelweiss Air, Europoles Suisse, Eyecatcher, Flugplatz DübendorfAG, Fokker-Team, Pratt & Whitney Aero Engines International, Pro Aero, Red Bull, Rega, Ruag, Swiss Army,Skyguide, Smartflyer, Solar Impulse, Swiss International Air Lines, Swissport, Swiss Space Office, VerbandSchweizer Papeterien, Women Pilots, Zeppelin Luftschifftechnik, Zeppelin Museum Friedrichshafen