#Trade Shows & Events
AIX 2023: A plethora of cabin interiors and IFE innovation
The 2023 edition of Aircraft Interiors Expo (AIX) will open its doors in just six weeks’ time.
From 6-8 June, airline professionals from around the world will come together in Hamburg, Germany to seek out the latest innovations from the cabin interiors and inflight entertainment industry, and suppliers are gearing up by announcing their plans for the event.
Time to get comfortable
RECARO Aircraft Seating (7B20) returns to AIX 2023 with its latest, award-winning seating solutions. The lightweight CL3810 economy class seat and ‘mini-suite in the sky’ CL6720 business class seat will be featured, as well as a never-before-seen premium class product designed for long-haul flights. At the Customer Service Corner, located on its booth, guests will be able to experience fresh and innovative concepts that prioritise efficiency for regional jets and lessors. In addition, the company’s brand-new Innovation Station will give guests a glimpse of how RECARO Aircraft Seating is investing in smart technology and sustainable materials to make future cabins more efficient and flexible.
Dr Mark Hiller, CEO of RECARO Aircraft Seating and RECARO Holding, commented: “AIX is about two things: people and products. I always look forward to connecting with partners, suppliers and old friends, while also getting to see which innovations spark inspiration for the industry.”
For the first time ever, Aviointeriors (5A30) will present its new tailor-made seat designed for eVTOL aircraft in anticipation of the new certification rules that are going to be introduced by FAA/EASA. It will also display its new range of innovative seating products that will deliver new levels of cabin comfort to passengers. Its premium Synthesis EVO seat has been designed to include many comfort features, while its widebody business staggered ALLEGRA seat has been redesigned to significantly enhance the passenger experience of long-range traveller and its MYA economy seat has been equipped with a 13.3-inch widescreen. Its HERIC (Herringbone In Cruise) configuration will also be on display which enables passengers to comfortably stretch their legs sideways after take-off, as well as giving them easy access to the equipped back panel of the seat in front.
Elsewhere, Jamco (6A110) will present its iF DESIGN AWARD winning ‘Quest for Elegance’ staggered business class seat concept, which has been designed to meet demand for an inventive, spacious seat for high density business class interior cabins that doesn’t compromise comfort. Featuring a new, patented angled tilt monitor and an industrial design, focused on providing an elegant premium hotel in the sky while maintaining competitive density, the Quest seat maximises the passenger experience.
A new generation of materials
Sustainability, lightweight and acoustics will be the focus for MGR Foamtex (7B41) – one of the world’s leading manufacturers of advanced passenger upholstery systems. The company will demonstrate its MGRSoftWall NextGen which delivers all the comfort and soft-touch benefits of its previous product, but at just 50% of the weight. Visitors to AIX will also have the chance to experience the pre-launch of MGRSoftWall Acoustic – a brand new and exciting addition that combines soft touch with further acoustic benefit.
Les Simpson, MGR Foamtex’s CEO, commented: “Sustainability is critical to all of us. These new products are particularly exciting as they deliver real and proven benefits that are available now.”
The environment will also be in the spotlight for Muirhead (6E95), a trusted supplier of the lowest carbon aviation leather, which will showcase its three high performance products.
The company’s CareGuard is an easy-to-clean natural product with superior protection for aircraft seat covers against soiling and staining. With a protective seal that prevents dye transfer and dirt build-up, CareGuard can significantly reduce maintenance requirements, speed up turnaround times, and extend the leather’s service life. Muirhead LightCore is a reduced weight, full substance innovation that is 33% lighter than standard leather, without compromising high technical performance, thickness, durability, or comfort. Lastly, ActiveHygiene helps deliver best-in-class hygiene for aviation interiors.
Myles Hobbs, Head of Aviation EMEA at Muirhead, said: “AIX is a fantastic opportunity to meet and inspire our customers with our sustainability, design, and new product capabilities. With sustainability so high on the agenda, we look forward to seeing how the supply chain can work together to respond to the industry’s stringent ESG requirements.”
Also at AIX will be one of the industry’s most established names, Peronne Performance Leathers & Textiles. (5D46), which was founded in 1893 and will display its latest range of performance leathers and textiles. It will also be on-hand to explain how its range of products can support airlines looking into emissions, upcycling, refurbishment, total cost of ownership, life cycle analysis, comfort, style, maintenance, delivery, corrosion, certification, customization, and value.
Onboard technology in the spotlight
Inflight connectivity and entertainment (IFEC) technology continues to be one of the main driving forces behind improving onboard experience, and the IFEC Zone – in halls B2-B4 – will be an invaluable experience for airlines looking to meet new suppliers and identify the most innovative solutions.
Among the 50+ IFEC Zone exhibitors, will be Apios (4E60). The company will showcase its REFLECT digital experience platform, which has a unique, industry-leading capability that enables passengers to cast their own DRM-compliant content to its proprietary ultra-thin, lightweight, seat back integrated display. The company believes this will unleash the power of the internet on-board and empower the passenger’s device like never before. Focussing on a seamless, hyper-personalised passenger experience, REFLECT is the first of three interconnected, digital eco systems in development by Apios.
AERQ (4C20) will explain how its solutions can empower airlines to become playmakers in their own digital cabin experiences. Its digital platform, AERENA, offers a fast and flexible solution for integrating content, apps and UI changes onboard. Through only one login, airlines gain complete control of their digital experience and optimised operational efficiency. As AERENA facilitates a greater passenger engagement leading to insights into their inflight behaviours, airlines are provided with an entirely new set of capabilities to deliver up-to-the-moment information, contextual branding and advertising, opening up new business opportunities to create revenue, savings and growth.
Spafax (2D90), a leading global agency specialising in IFE content curation and acquisition, will showcase Spafax One, its new end-to-end digital entertainment ecosystem. The solution is designed to help airlines simplify and streamline the complex process of content curation and delivery, while enhancing the passenger experience. Features include data- and expert-driven recommendations, zero-touch delivery, digital products, and flexible commercial models with options for new media inventory for partners and advertisers.
“We’re thrilled to showcase Spafax One at AIX,” said chief technical officer Paul Colley. “IFE is only becoming more advanced and technical, and we developed Spafax One around the needs of our airline customers to deliver IFE solutions that set themselves apart from the competition and resonate with passengers.”
At AIX 2023, ThinKom (4E41) will present a new extension of its IFC product line with a ThinAir Plus option – a hybrid of two separate antenna systems in a single installation, combining the ThinKom VICTS phased array with a small LEO-only electronically steered antenna (ESA) panel under the same radome.
The combination keeps all the recognised performance and reliability advantages of ThinKom’s mature and proven VICTS technology, while adding the second, LEO-only link for additional low-latency connection options. “As an antenna company, we’re trying to provide a solution that is as agnostic as possible, to deliver connectivity from every orbit to every seat flying,” explains Bill Milroy, ThinKom’s CTO. “With the ThinAir Plus architecture we’re able to add next-generation benefits on top of our existing, high-performance antenna.”
Polly Magraw, Event Director of Aircraft Interiors Expo, commented: “Over the last year we have heard several airlines, including Emirates and Delta, announce multi-billion dollar plans to improve onboard experience. AIX provides a unique platform for cabin interiors buyers to identify and source innovations that will redefine and shape the future of passenger experience. With so many launches and new services being unveiled this year, we can’t wait to open the doors and facilitate thousands of meetings that will enable airlines to truly transform their offerings.”