TopDeck offered for CSeries

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Thales is in talks with Bombardier about supplying its integrated cockpit, dubbed TopDeck 2005, for the proposed CSeries airliner. The company is developing cockpit technologies for future large business jets and "small commercial jets", and has completed a TopDeck 2005 technology demonstrator, dubbed F-DICE (Fox-Demonstrator Interactive Cockpit Environment), at its Toulouse headquarters.

Thales recently signed a €70 million ($85 million) deal to supply its avionics for the Sukhoi Russian Regional Jet (RRJ), but Pierre Bonnet, avionics department manager for TopDeck projects, says TopDeck 2005 will not be adopted because of the RRJ's "aggressive schedule". Instead it will have "adapted A380 avionics".

Thales Aerospace division senior vice-president Francois Quentin says the Bombardier CSeries is a potential application for TopDeck and Thales is continuing discussions with Bombardier, as are Honeywell and Rockwell Collins. It already supplies the flightdeck avionics for the Canadian manufacturer's Dash 8 Q400 turboprop. The F-DICE mock-up has four 35cm (14in) -diagonal liquid crystal displays, a head-up display, two multipurpose cursor control units and a voice-recognition system.

Meanwhile, Thales and French RRJ supplier Safran have applied for French government loans to cover 30% of their investments in the RRJ.

VLADIMIR KARNOZOV/TOULOUSE