Freeware MSFS developer Aero Dynamics has published their first quarterly information drop of 2023 on their Discord server. It has been almost four months since their last update on the aircraft’s development, and now we can finally see the fruits of the team’s labor.
The McDonnell Douglas DC-10 is arguably one of the most recognizable trijet aircraft of the twentieth century. The aircraft was marketed as providing the same comfort as a Boeing 747 while allowing airlines to serve airports that could not accommodate the Boeing 747’s size. Despite a series of design flaws and safety concerns, the DC-10 became popular with airlines worldwide. The DC-10 came in several variants, including the KC-10 Extender, a military variant of the DC-10 that can provide in-flight refueling.
In their update, Aero Dynamics reaffirmed their commitment to “creating the most authentic DC-10 platform for commercial flight simulation.” While previous updates focused on the exterior and cockpit modeling, this update was centered around the aircraft’s cabin and systems.
Work on the aircraft’s interior modeling saw a substantial increase in resources as the team tried to accurately represent the differences in the cabin and cargo bays for each DC-10 variant. For example, the team has modeled the KC-10 Bravo’s interior with A.R.O. access, the cargo hold that replaces the passenger cabin on the DC-10-30F, and the upper galley located on the passenger variant of the DC-10-30. In addition, the team noted that while they have been working on the KC-10’s cockpit, it hasn’t received the same amount of attention as the DC-10’s cockpit. Since both variants’ cockpits are incredibly similar, Aero Dynamics is focused on perfecting the DC-10’s cockpit systems before shifting their attention.
The exterior modeling saw a slight upgrade as the team worked on finessing the little details that will increase the realism of the aircraft. These include the proper placement of labels and markings, access doors, refueling ports, and maintenance jack ports. These improvements will ensure that when flight simmers conduct their “pre-flight walkarounds,” the aircraft will look and feel like the real aircraft. Furthermore, Aero Dynamics confirmed that the -30 and -30F will feature all of the proper cargo door openings, including the lower bulk and lower cargo access doors.
Lastly, the aircraft’s cockpit lighting system saw a substantial overhaul, a critical part of the aircraft since the DC-10 doesn’t feature an “ECAM” system. In the photo previews, Aero Dynamics showcased some of the cockpit lights and electrical system gauges in action. Because of the complexities of the lighting system, Aero Dynamics plans to release a video to provide an in-depth preview of the system. In addition, the team will now concentrate their efforts on the fuel system and A.P.U. (auxiliary power unit).
Overall, while there is still a lot of work to get down on the DC-10, Aero Dynamics is making good on their promise to ensure every detail of the aircraft is not overlooked. Moving forward, the team will focus on the interior modeling, and we can expect the new development update in June.