November 3 2020  |  Cabin Equipment

PAX Panel: Examining cabin interior design for the future

By PAX Panel

Sponsored by AIME, representatives from Zephyr Aerospace, Jamco America and PriestmanGoode discuss interiors innovations and designs, plus the emerging trends born out of the pandemic. Hosted by PAX Tech Editor-in-Chief Rick Lundstrom and special guest host Helen Nagle of AIME

PAX Tech released today Episode Three of its virtual roundtable discussion. Entitled, ‘PAX Panel: Examining cabin interior design for the future,’ the episode covers the latest updates on interiors innovations and designs, plus the emerging trends born out of the pandemic. Panelists include Jeffrey O’Neill, Chief Executive Officer, Zephyr Aerospace; Jeremy Hunter, Senior Sales and Marketing Manager, Jamco America; and Nigel Goode, Designer, Director, PriestmanGoode.

PAX Tech’s Rick Lundstrom and Jane Hobson, alongside Guest Host Helen Nagle of the Tarsus Group, organizers of Aircraft Interiors Middle East (AIME), discuss with panelists how unprecedented solutions, such as minimal touch, touchless options and double-decker seating configurations, may contribute to future aircraft cabins.

“Jamco evaluated ways to improve one of the most concerning places in the aircraft; the lavatory. We implemented clean initiative concepts that include minimal touch of the handle and lock,” says Hunter. The company has already initiated a tab toilet lid on the 787 that allows the lid to be opened/closed with a single finger, which has been “well received,” he says.

The lid is part of Jamco’s collaborative clean cabin Project Blue Sky initiative announced in late-summer, which focuses on developing and producing "minimal touch," hygienic cabin interior products, explains Hunter.

The toilet tab solution by Jamco allows mitigated touch. It allows for a single finger to open/close the seat and lid.

PriestmanGoode also launched a targeted program in response to the pandemic. Pure Skies is a design initiative that focuses on future growth and passenger satisfaction in the aviation industry. It includes a complete review of Business and Economy Class cabins while addressing consumer, business and environmental concerns, according to the press release.

“We find this is a turning point within the industry and it’s not something that will go away,” says Goode. “It’s with us for a long time and hopefully we can see the end of it, but in order to create something revolutionary would take three years. We really wanted to look at this a bit more long-term and we wanted to get the ball rolling as quick as we can because the important thing is to get the airlines to start to thinking about what their passengers are going to need when things start to turn around.”

The Pure Skies Room features a brand new seat design with minimal split lines and seam-welded fabrics to eliminate dirt traps. Photo credit: PriestmanGoode

Along with mitigated touch and touchless solutions throughout the cabin, unique seating configuration trends have also caught the eye of the industry since early-2020, especially the Zephyr Seat.

Zephyr Aerospace’s lie-flat seat, designed for long-haul Premium Economy Class cabins, is the first of its kind, O’Neill says. In development before the pandemic as means to offer an affordable lie-flat option in Premium Economy, the patent-pending design also supports the socially distanced cabins that will be required in the future.

The Zephyr Seat

“There’s a demand for it and the product post-COVID will look very similar to what business class looked like when British Airways introduced the first lie-flat seat in 1998,” he says. “That was ground-breaking but still very new and we hope to become the standard for premium economy class travel.”

Stay tuned for the next installment of PAX Panel, coming soon. All PAX Panel episodes are available online so that everyone can watch and share.

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