Concorde has three toilets located on the aircraft (No. 1, 2 and 3). These toilets provide identical facilities and layouts to each other. Toilet No.1 is positioned on the forward right hand side of the aircraft, and toilets 2 and 3 are centrally positioned on the left-hand side and right hand sides of the passenger compartment.
Each toilet compartment is constructed in two separate sections; the idea behind this design is to simplify removal and installation procedures. Each toilet is equipped with a WC bench unit, a vanity unit and cosmetic rack.
The intention of British Airways in 2001, was to remove these toilets from the aircraft and replace them with new upgraded versions, this was planned to take place during the next planned ‘D’ check and major overhaul of the aircraft, which would have also have been part of the final life extension programme of the aircraft, and could have seen the BA Concordes flying passengers until 2025.
The London based design agency ‘Factory Design’ and Terence Conran had been working on these new designs for the toilets (Which were to be renamed Bathrooms) as part of the ‘Project Rocket’ interior upgrades to the British Airways Concorde fleet.
In 2003, BA’s hand was force by Airbus and Air France, and the whole fleet was grounded and the upgraded toilets therefore were never fitted to any of the aircraft. But if you would like to see one of these new toilets or “bathrooms” as they were due to be called, there is new toilet design mock-up on display to the public in Scotland which has been positioned to one side of BA Concorde G-BOAA.
There are two mirrors which are secured to the fore and aft bulkheads, one above and one below the toilet shelf assembly. The mirrors are 0.1 in. (2.5 mm) thick and made from highly polished aluminium sheets bonded to a silicon rubber backing, with a back plate of aluminium to form a rigid fixing area. One of these mirrors is large and covers the upper section of the left hand bulkhead, and is secured in place by strips of dual lock with a protective edge strip along its base. There is a disabled grab handle that is positioned below the mirror.
The toilet door, when pushed, folds to the left-hand side to permit entry to and from the toilet. It is locked in the closed position by operating a sliding knob on the inner face of the door. This simultaneously moves the indicator plate from VACANT to OCCUPIED and inserts a locking bolt into the lintel. The bolt also actuates a micro-switch in the door shut recess to illuminate the TOILET OCCUPIED sign, and during this moment the toilet mirror lights up. On the inside of the door is a flush-fitting spring-loaded coat hook.
There is an actron lock assembly which secures the door in the open position. There are two air vent grilles fitted, one on each door panel which allow unrestricted air to flow should the cabin pressure drop.
WC Bench Unit
The bench unit is located on the outboard side of the toilet directly opposite the door and in front of you as you enter, as with a lot of other passenger aircraft. This bench conceals the WC tank and its fittings. The unit comprises of a removable top, front shrouds, and lower outboard panel secured by a dual lock. The WC flushing handle is set in a recess on the right hand side of the lower outboard panel.
An automatic BCF fire extinguisher has been installed in each of the toilets. Each system has two detector heads with one in the waste disposal box and the other monitoring general electrical units beneath the wash bowl.
TOILET DRAINS ANTI-ICING
In the realm that Concorde operates, one of the biggest problems is waste water being drained from the aircraft during supersonic flight. This is due to the extreme cold temperatures that can cause this waste water to freeze and possible cause damage to the aircraft as it breaks and falls away.
With this in mind, the low ambient temperatures of each lower section of each toilet drain associated with all three toilets is heated to prevent icing build up during flight. There are heating elements connected to each of these three toilet drains which comprise of a clip-on muff which is wrapped around the lower stub pipe with a gasket interposed between the clip-on muff and stub pipe.
Thermostats which are attached with pipe clips to the lowest part of these stub pipes, and therefore the coldest part of the pipe, control of the heating process. If the temperature of a drain pipe falls to 40(+ or-5) deg F (4.4(+or-2.75) deg C), the associated thermostat contacts close to complete the circuit to the heating elements. As a result the elements heat the drain until the temperature of the pipe reaches 55(+or-5) deg F (12.8(+or-2.75) deg C), when the thermostat contacts open, thus breaking the contact. Electrical power for this whole process is supplied both on the ground and in the air from No. 1 ground/flight 115V a.c. busbar.
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In 1999 British Airways commissioned the London based agency “Factory design”, working with Terence Conran, to improve the interior of their Concorde fleet. This collaboration led to the most amazing, advanced seats ever fitted to Concorde.
The British Airways Concordes, have a total of seven galleys fitted throughout the aircraft, from these galleys the rich and famous were served with the finest meals and wines in the world