According to the Chairman of this year’s judging panel, Dr Peter Vink, “This year’s Crystal Cabin Awards winners are international role models for the industry… They are impressive proof that, year after year, we keep seeing innovations in the aircraft interiors market”. His thoughts were supported by the breathtaking innovation on show across seven categories at this year’s awards ceremony; the only international award for excellence in aircraft interior innovation.
Following a busy opening day at Aircraft Interiors Expo, the winners of the Crystal Cabin Awards were announced last night at a gala dinner in the prestigious surroundings of the Hotel Atlantic Kempinski’s Ball Room. Many of the exhibition’s innovative exhibitors were present in an audience which included VIPs from across the aircraft interior sector.
In the University category a team from Delft University of Technology, who worked in conjunction with Zodiac Aerospace, secured the winning nomination for a new passenger experience concept – Sense the Transition.
“We wanted to show the aviation industry a new product, to inspire them to work with new partners”, said Anna-Louisa Peeters – one of a team of three, including Karan Shah and Dorine van Meeuwen, representing the university in this category. “We hope to open the eyes of people within the aircraft interiors industry to the potential applicable innovation available outside it”.
The innovative in-flight concept for long-haul flights provides a new audio-visual ‘geo-tainment’ experience; projecting pre-recorded location-triggered videos and channels onto the backrest of the seat in front to provide passengers with an immersive travelling experience. “The objective is to give passengers a connection to the rich culture passing by outside the aircraft”, said Ms van Meeuwen. “To enhance the flight experience so it is no longer perceived as just waiting time, but rather precious time”.
In the Greener Cabin, Health, Safety & Environment category DIEHL Aerospace was recognised for its DACAPO-Energy Autonomous Cabin solution. The product separates A/C into the cabin and aircraft systems with independent power networks. The Industrial Design & Visionary Concepts category was won by B/E Aerospace & TEAGUE for the B/E Aerospace Advance Lavatory, which frees up seven inches of cabin room to enable the addition of an extra six economy class seats without impacting on the passenger experience.
Schott AG proved successful in the Material & Components category with its Laminated Special Glass Composite, which offers superior characteristics to traditional plastic-based panes. Meanwhile the EC-00 seat from ZIM Flugsitz GmbH overcame other nominees in the Passenger Comfort Hardware category. The seat was developed to fulfil the special requirements of single aisle planes in order to optimise its utilisation without impacting on the passenger’s comfort.
The Passenger Comfort Systems category was won by Lufthansa Technik AG with the acWAP (aircraft wireless access point) solution; a product designed to deliver high speed WiFi for in-flight web browsing, fast video streaming, real-time communications and many other internet-based activities. Finally the Premium Class & VIP category witnessed Paperclip Design Limited succeed with its Caterpillar – Convertible Seating for Long-Haul Flights product. The solution comprised of an innovative seating area that can be rapidly converted from Premium Economy to a Full-Flat Business Option; allowing airlines to adapt the allocation of Business and Economy seats on long-haul flight based on load factors.
This year’s Crystal Cabin Award winners celebrate their success at Aircraft Interiors Expo
Earlier today Katie Murphy, Event Director of Aircraft Interiors Expo, recongised all the winners in a ceremony on the busy exhibition floor. “It is great to see the popularity of the Crystal Cabin Awards grow every year. Around 700 applications were whittled down to just 12 awardees and I would encourage all our exhibitors to enter the Awards next year – given the sheer number of new products on show at Aircraft Interiors Expo 2014, I believe many of our exhibitors stand a good chance of success in the future”.