Transforming a Bombardier Challenger 604 into a Medevac Aircraft

Within business aviation, business jets typically support one of two main use cases: transporting VIP passengers, or transporting patients in medical emergencies (medical evacuation, or medevac).  

Transforming any passenger aircraft for medevac use requires a combination of both major and minor changes to be made, to meet the life-saving requirements of the medical crew, the patient, and the patient’s family. In particular, the aircraft needs to be able to accommodate a medical stretcher, which can be easily moved in and out of the aircraft. This requires the bulkhead, which separates the main cabin from the weather and noise associated with the cabin door being open, to be modified in some way. 

When it comes to modifying an aircraft for medevac use, no two solutions are exactly the same. Bulkhead modifications are unique to each aircraft, as QCM Design can attest to, having designed and certified several minor changes to bulkheads in the past. 

There are a number of possible solutions to consider, but which bulkhead solution the operator or owner of the aircraft decides to proceed with depends on their requirements and personal preferences. QCM Design was recently involved in another bulkhead modification for medevac use which involved designing and installing an entirely new lightweight bulkhead, to preserve the condition of the original one for future resale value. 

Typically, the most straightforward method of modifying a bulkhead for medevac use involves cutting a door frame into the original bulkhead, the panels of which are then joined together to create a ‘sliding door’. Secured with two latches, this sliding door can be easily removed by medical staff on ground to allow medical stretchers to be easily and quickly taken off or put back onto the aircraft, without needing the involvement of maintenance personnel, which can slow down the process.

A recent project, for which QCM Design was commissioned, alongside an aircraft interior manufacturer and a Part-145 organization, sought to repurpose a Bombardier Challenger 604 for medevac use while retaining specific features, notably the monitor within the bulkhead. 

The owner’s desire to retain the monitor in the bulkhead necessitated a different approach to the usual straightforward one, the biggest challenge of which was to ensure the structural integrity of the sliding door which contained the monitor, and the routing of the electrical connections for the monitor, which typically spans the entire bulkhead. 

Structural reinforcement of the sliding door was crucial to ensure its durability and reliability during operations, and rerouting the electrical connections associated with the monitor added further complexity to the design and process overall. QCM Design’s expertise ensured that the design for this modified bulkhead met all applicable certification safety standards and load requirements, while also adhering to the owner’s requirements, while the aircraft interior manufacturer made the modifications, and the Part-145 Organization installed it. 

The end result was a structurally sound, two-latch ‘sliding door’ with an in-built monitor which could be quickly removed on ground (by maintenance personnel, due to the electrical connections) to accommodate a medical stretcher.  

This entire bulkhead project, from removal, design, modifications, and reinstallation, took approximately 8 weeks. Throughout this time in which the aircraft was grounded, further enhancements for medevac use were designed and certified by QCM Design, including the installation of touch screens and controllers in the side ledges, and upgrades to the Cabin Management System (CMS) which included connecting the CMS to the existing WiFi network so that cabin settings could be adjusted from an iPad.

This bulkhead modification, part of the transformation of the CL604 into a medevac aircraft, showcases the innovative solutions and collaborative efforts within the aviation industry to meet owner/operators’ preferences while also adhering to the stringent industry safety requirements.

If you’re interested in learning more about medevac aircraft considerations and design solutions, we invite you to read this recent article about a lightweight, quick-release bulkhead solution which prioritizes resale value.

QCM Design is an EASA Approved Part-21 DOA with over 10 years’ experience helping clients to achieve their creative and technical design goals, while ensuring that the highest safety regulations and industrial quality standards for their aircraft are met.

As well as assisting with the certification of minor and major changes to airplanes and helicopters, we offer tailor-made solutions for any desired design concept, including the installation of new avionics or electronics systems, cabin interiors, galleys, or various other equipment installations.

For more information about how we can assist you with any design changes, contact us at or visit