PAX Tech October 2020 Issue

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OCTOBER 2020 |

MRO, Interiors & IFEC

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not in lockdown T hree announcements reached us the morning of October 19 that are examples of what has been accomplished during this time. Perhaps the biggest news came with the completion of Seamless Release 2.0 from a global community of airlines and technology leaders known as the Seamless Air Alliance. More than 30 leading airlines and suppliers make up the group, with the goal of enabling connectivity providers to supply products with a modular architecture and open interfaces from their first release. It’s known as OpenIFC. “Seamless Release 2.0 completes the blueprint needed for the industry to scale the deployment of future-proof, OpenIFC systems,” said Jack Mandala, Chief Executive Officer of Seamless Air Alliance. “This breakthrough will allow airlines to purchase best-ofbreed components in a multi-vendor ecosystem, improving the efficiency of deploying, operating, and maintaining inflight systems – which is especially important as recent events have highlighted the critical role of connectivity.” With OpenIFC in place, there is promise that providers will meet the greater expectations that travelers now have for accessing inflight connectivity conveniently. Airline connectivity from North America will benefit from a new collaboration between Inmarsat and Hughes Network Systems announced October 20. The collaboration between the two com-

panies will marry the Hughes Jupiter™ high-throughput satellite constellation with Inmarsat’s Global Express network. The new collaboration, called GX+North America™ promises a new level of ability for passengers to stream video, audio and shop online while in the aircraft. “The ground-breaking new solution underscores the strategic vision of Inmarsat and Hughes as they look past the pandemic and into the future needs of commercial airline fleets in North America, whose passengers will require ubiquitous connectivity as they return to the skies,” said a release from Inmarsat. The final news comes from a well-known provider of moving maps. Flightpath 3D has expanded its map feature that plays into passengers’ natural curiosity about what exactly lies below them during their flight. For its Flying Over Places feature, Flightpath now has more than 50,000 points of interest that can be auto-played as the flight moves along. Historical information about landmarks, attractions and merely interesting places are always just below the wings on any given flight. Next time you’re flying (roughly) northeast from Los Angeles you might be able to learn about the 1870s mining town of Silver Cliff, Colorado. So much as happened in the evolution of inflight entertainment and connectivity in just the last two decades. It will take more than a few months of downtime to stop the forward momentum.

will not be returned unless accompanied by return postage. The views expressed in this magazine do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher or editor. July 2019. All rights reserved. Nothing may be reprinted in whole or in part without written permission from the publisher. © PAX International magazine

ISSN 1206-5714 Key title: Pax International

Rick Lundstrom Editor-in-Chief PAX Tech  |  PAX TECH  |  3


Features IFE



A READER’S DREAM Quarantines still exist in Canada for incoming travelers, but Air Canada and one of its suppliers is offering the chance to ease some of the boredom REACHING OUT, BUT TOUCHLESS Providers of IFE onboard platforms and portables are building possibilities in the future where passengers will be booking and buying more products and services from their PEDs




A BRIEF HISTORY OF CRISIS-BASED INNOVATION Iarfhlaith Kelly, Retail inMotion’s new Chief Technology Officer, explores the history of innovation in the aviation industry with some encouraging findings in the face of COVID-19



WITHOUT WIRES When the industry returns to buying mode, many will cast a gaze on what passengers have at home, and one of those new must-haves is a wireless phone charger



PEACE OF MIND FROM GROUND TO SKY From online to in the air, a new web-based interactive map allows passengers to assess the pandemic situation at each destination in Etihad Airway’s network



COOL, CALM AND CONNECTED Connectivity providers are looking beyond the pandemic to adapt to the rapidly changing industry






22 ON THE COVER: Stelia’s Business Class OPERA seat for single-aisle aircraft, featured on page 6, is among the innovations launched during the pandemic


3 6 32



LOOKING AHEAD This overview of the 2020 CarTrawler Yearbook of Ancillary Revenue Report lays out what 2020 may look like for the industry

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PERFECTING PROTECTION This interiors provider is launching a range of protective equipment for multiple aspects of the cabin, from seating and sanitizer to gear for crew DISCOVERY THROUGH DESIGN SEKISUI KYDEX tells PAX Tech about the features in its virtual innovation centers developed to help make the creative journey easier for designers HYGIENE-INSPIRED IDEAS ANA is moving ahead with a new touchless lavatory door in partnership with JAMCO Corporation after testing the concept in one of its lounges HIDDEN SOLUTIONS This company tells PAX Tech how aircraft humidity and condensation control solutions may play a major role in getting passengers into the cabin


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VIRTUAL BUT VIVACIOUS Future Travel Experience Founder and Chief Executive Officer Daniel Coleman shares an update on what can be expected at the upcoming FTE APEX Virtual Expo A DATE IN DUBAI Aircraft Interiors Middle East organizers have their eyes set on an early March event that brings together thousands to the bustling aviation region



Stelia launches OPERA seat for single-aisle Stelia Aerospace launched its new OPERA Business Class passenger seat in early-October, designed for singleaisle aircraft. The “Full Flat, Full Access, Full Privacy” Business Class seat provides more foot space for comfortable sleeping. It can accommodate a 20-inch screen and can be outfitted with a fully integrated door. Extra capacity includes closed amenity stowage and laptop stowage. Its large meal table is stowed under the cocktail table. “With ‘OPERA’, airlines operating single-aisles on transcontinental routes can offer customers the outstanding level of comfort they can find on wide-bodies,” said Thierry Kanengieser, Vice President Cabin Interior at Stelia. “Combining design and efficiency, this seat is a major step forward for our industry, creating an enhanced passenger experience and high added value for airlines.”


Aereos Interior Solutions develops built-in antimicrobial technology

BioCote, which is built into Aereos’ interior products, is 99 percent effective against microbes, according to test results

Stelia’s OPERA seat offers room for a 20-inch screen

Aereos Interior Solutions has received test results confirming that its BioCote® antimicrobial silver ion technology is more than 99 percent effective against microbes, tested over a 24-hour period. Built into Aereos’ interior products, it takes as little as eight weeks from concept to delivery, providing protection against cross-contamination and reducing odor and staining on interior surfaces. The technology certified by HACCP International (Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point) and is food contact safe, approved by the FDA (Food and Drug Administration). “Our team of highly skilled aviation professionals are doing their part to help the industry that we are all so passionate about,” said David Baker, Partner at Aereos, in an October interview with PAX Tech. “Our new line of antimicrobial products are a game changer, providing 24/7 microbial fighting technology built into our aircraft interior parts. This is a first for the airline industry.”


Etihad beefs up mobile application Etihad Airways has updated its mobile application for Android, Apple and Huawei smartphones, enabling users to manage their journey with greater ease. Key features allow purchase upgrades and other extras. Users can spend Etihad Guest Miles as a form of payment or choose from 10 other payment options, including Travel Bank, which have been added to the booking flow.

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The app allows people to book flights with voice search and enroll in the Etihad Guest loyalty program. Uber and Google Maps are now also integrated into the app to direct travelers to and around the airport. If the status of a flight should change, an update is automatically pushed to guests through the app. It is available for download through Google Play, Huawei AppGallery and Apple Store.



Zephyr introduces double-decker seat San Francisco-based start-up Zephyr Aerospace has introduced the Zephyr Seat, a double-decker life-flat seat that offers private, comfortable sleep positions for an affordable rate. It helps reduce stress and jetlag and encourages physical distancing, offering space for each passenger. The Premium Economy seat upgrade allows airlines to maintain the industry standard configuration 2-4-2, but in a

stacked bi-level format, Jeffrey O’Neill, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Zephyr Aerospace, tells PAX Tech. The price for each seat is up to 50 percent less than a standard lie-flat Business/First Class seat and up to 30 percent lighter. Each seat has three movable parts – exterior armrest, tray table and footwell cover – reducing direct maintenance costs by up to 75 percent.

The Zephyr life-flat seat by Zephyr Aerospace

Panasonic adds COVID-19 fighting features for airlines Panasonic Avionics Corporation has unveiled its “Welcome Aboard Collection,” a selection of inflight products and solutions designed to help airlines address passenger concerns during COVID-19. It consists of both inflight entertainment elements and other solutions designed to help augment airlines’ efforts to create a safer and healthier travel experience, while reducing costs and reinforcing their commitment to the passenger and their crew. It helps reduce touchpoints via “less touch” technology such as an Onboard Reader to digitize print publications and Companion App to integrate the passengers’ personal device into the IFE experience. The Collection also includes solutions to enhance the cabin experience and deliver care through wellness solutions such as the nanoe™ Air Cleanser, which improves air quality by generating nano-sized electrostatic atomized water particles that can suppress odors and inhibit viruses, bacteria, and allergens.

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A number of new features join Panasonic’s nanoe Air Cleanser as part of its Welcome Aboard Collection


A reader’s dream Quarantines still exist in Canada for incoming travelers, but Air Canada and one of its suppliers is offering the chance to ease some of the boredom

PressReader offers users access to more than 7,000 publications



Toronto Pearson Airport (YYZ), international travelers arriving into Canada this fall know that at least a 14-day quarantine awaits them just outside the airport. A few specific exceptions are made, but for the most part nearly all incoming international travelers must endure the quarantine. They can binge Netflix or some other streaming entertainment. But if they are a news junkie who follows current events around the world, a partnership with Air Canada and the onboard media provider PressReader could make lockdown a little more palatable. In the promotion, any person who voluntarily takes a COVID-19 test offered at YYZ will receive complimentary PressReader access for 14 days after their arrival. The testing is part of a research study by another Air Canada partner, McMaster HealthLabs, which is conducting the tests to see if an airport-based surveillance program is feasible. More importantly, also see if there is a way forward to end the two-week quarantine for passengers entering the country. Whether it is in Canada, or anywhere else, people seem to be reading more – if PressReader’s engagement statistics are any indication. Through its service, the company offers access to more than 7,000 publications across 120 countries. “The average session length across PressReader’s platform doubled during this time and continues to increase,”

says Sandra Young, Manager of Public Relations and Brand Strategy at PressReader, based in Richmond, British Columbia. The company is constantly adding new content to its portfolio and now has digital versions of print publication in dozens of categories including children’s material. PressReader research shows that up to 50 percent of airline passengers say digital access to local and international news helps enhance their journey. The company now has a presence in more

than 150 airline lounges. Two of the most recent PressReader customers are Alaska Airlines and Aspire Lounges. PressReader access is offered on British Airways, Turkish Airlines, Cathay Pacific Airways, Iberia and Air Canada. “As travel resumes, heightened safety measures have advised the removal of print newspapers and magazines in airport terminals and lounges to encourage a contactless experience – but that doesn’t mean operators need to sacrifice the customer experience,” says Young.

TOP INTERNATIONAL PUBLICATIONS ON PRESSREADER The Washington Post The Guardian El Pais Bloomberg Businessweek, Fast Company Vogue Rolling Stone

PressReader research reveals that up to 50 percent of airline passengers say digital access to news enhances the journey  |  PAX TECH  |  9


Destination news through GetYourGuide is now available from Immfly

Reaching out, A

but touchless Providers of IFE onboard platforms and portables are building possibilities in the future where passengers will be booking and buying more products and services from their PEDs by RICK LUNDSTROM

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spate of announcements from purveyors of portable and onboard digital IFEC, along with cooperation from airline caterers and booking companies, holds the promise that when a changed commercial aviation industry returns, the opportunities for additional ancillary revenue will be waiting and available at the touch of a finger. When airlines reach out to passengers in the future, much of that reach will mean touchless interaction, with passengers placing orders for food, drinks and other shopping not from a seatback screen from a printed menu, but from their smart phone or tablet. Even though layoffs and closings have forced many behind closed doors, work has not stopped and product development has remained top of mind. Additional opportunities for revenue will be important in the years to come. The first of the fall announcements by providers occurred in early October in the form of a memorandum of understanding between Bluebox Aviation Systems and dnata Catering Australia to develop food & beverage and other retail purchases that can be made via the wireless inflight solutions on flights across Australia and New Zealand and other Pacific Ocean territories. Also this fall, the caterer announced it will be working

Bluebox Aviation will be partnering with dnata catering capabilities in Australia to supply food and beverage and other options to passengers

in the Netherlands with iFLEAT, an airline innovation and technology company and, a food delivery company. The partners will bring high-end, meals and snacks to airline passengers flying from Schiphol Airport through the ‘Takeaway’ app up to one hour before boarding. Passengers can choose from a range of fresh salads, poke bowls, sushi platters and hot meals and have their order delivered to the aircraft before departure. Companies like Bluebox, with an easily deployable system that be installed quickly will have an advantage in the new environment says, Kevin Clark, the company’s CEO. During the spring and summer, he says Bluebox remained very busy spending much of the time supporting existing customers and building up commercial and technical partnerships. This included enhancing what started as an informal arrangement with dnata into a firm offering that could be implemented easily and offer airlines and array of options on the back end for ordering and processing payments. “We took the view going into this that the world would re-emerge at some point, so let’s plan for the future,” Clark tells PAX Tech. “We retained all of our staff and

applied our energies to the evolution of our solution capabilities so that we are well placed to service the needs of the markets as they recover. This included relationships with market leaders such as danata and Retail inMotion.” In Asia-Pacific, Bluebox has maintained an office in Sydney since 2012 when it supplied the company’s tablet products to Jetstar. Now, the office supports much of the company’s business in the Asia-Pacific region along with its sales base in Singapore. Among the customers in the area are Japanese airlines ANA and Solaseed which have Bluebox streaming platforms on domestic routes, Vistara in India, Vietnam Airlines, and Cathay Dragon in Hong Kong, which ceased operations shortly before PAX Tech completed this issue. Bluebox and dnata will support each other in product customization and processes for delivering joint solutions to customers in the region. Clark says the partners have developed a range of options that would give airlines a retail experience from several sources with and array of options that could accept payment. Onboard ordering could bring drinks and food to passengers, while other goods could be collected at destinations. Entertainment options could also be available for purchase.  |  PAX TECH  |  11

Transavia is the launch airline in Amsterdam for the new meal delivery option by dnata and iFLEAT

In addition to providing ancillary revenue, partnerships like the dnata/Bluebox agreement give airlines a muchneeded connection to their passengers in a cabin where interaction with crew is at a minimum. “So we’re really delivering an inflight engagement platform for enhancing the passenger experience on board – still ‘IFE’, but well beyond entertainment,” said David Brown, Business Development Director, Bluebox in the announcement of the partnership.

to book skip-the-line tickets and experiences they will not find anywhere else, are both powerful added incentives.” The other major announcement of the fall brought together two of the largest players in IFE hardware and global onboard media. They have developed a cloud-based system that promises to be the “next wave of inflight entertainment and connectivity” with a range of smart options that reach directly into a trove of passenger information through cutting-edge technology. The collaboration between onboard media giant Spafax and portable wireless IFEC provider AirFi will give passengers access to cloud-based inflight entertainment tailored not only to their flight, but also provide content geared to specific nationalities and regions via the AirFi VENUS third generation portable IFEC system. On a typical A320 with 180 passengers, airlines will deploy up to three portable IFEC units, said Jean-Marc Thomas, Managing Director of Spafax Asia in Singapore. For an aircraft that will be flying from Singapore to Bangkok, dnata has long sought ways to best leverage inflight purchasing, and has recently partnered with several companies

Destinations and guides

The next two developments hold the promise of passengers learning much more about where they are flying and having goods and services ordered online or waiting for them when they arrive. In mid-October Barcelona-based Immfly announced the launch of an onboard digital service developed in partnership with GetYourGuide, the booking platform. Immfly says the new service will allow passengers to book destination experiences from more than 60,000 options like immersive food and beverage tours, cooking and craft classes, bucket-list experiences, and niche offerings. They will all be available even if the aircraft is out of range of onboard Internet access. A number of airlines have already signed on the feature, said Sotiris Damianos, a spokesperson for Immfly. “Our platform has been uniquely designed to facilitate rapid third party integration. Our framework and architecture enables any new third-party service to integrate seamlessly, Damianos says. “The GetYourGuide module has been designed in a way which allows quick implementation, practically making it a plug and play option for our customers.” Damianos says the new service can be easily customized to airline specifications and the Immfly technology currently allows all that is required in terms of inventory updates, payments and other data reconciliation. Like other platforms, Immfly is seeking to help airlines make that connection between themselves and a passenger that may be less engaged in the future. “From a passenger perspective, we enable customers to browse and get inspired with activities they can enjoy in their destination, while en route,” Damianos adds. “The variety customers can choose from is breathtaking and the privilege 12  |  PAX TECH  |  OCTOBER 2020

content and advertising would be uploaded from cloud-based servers specifically for the route the previous evening. The VENUS unit has a 24 hour battery, making it useful through the day, on aircraft that may fly to several cities. Passengers would access the content through their devices. The servers could read settings from the devices and deliver content in their native language. Once logging on, airlines can market duty free products or goods and services that are accessible at the passengers destinations, such as rides from Grab in Asia or Uber in other parts of the world. The VENUS system from AirFi has a number of other capabilities. Through it, passengers can access Hollywood approved digital right management (DRM) entertainment without the need for a specific app. Storage in the AirFi units is approximately 1 terabyte as standard equipment and with ground connectivity in 3G or 4G through the company’s low-earth orbit option. The touchless aircraft cabin that is quickly eliminating printed material and other potentially hazardous elements. Add to that the ability of airlines to access information about passenger demographics and other data and both Spafax and AirFi see the partnership as a way to finally unlock the growth potential for onboard digital sales. “The revenue generation opportunity from digital platforms inflight are still massively untapped,” said Job Hiemerikx, CEO of AirFi in the announcement of the partnership. “Inflight entertainment has been well established for over 30 years since the days of Hi-8 tapes, but remains a cost center.”


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A brief history of crisis-based innovation

Iarfhlaith Kelly, Retail inMotion’s new Chief Technology Officer, explores the history of innovation in the aviation industry with some encouraging findings in the face of COVID-19

Retail inMotion suspects that the innovations developed during COVID-19 will be around long after the pandemic subsides


he aviation industry has a particularly rich history when it comes to technological advancements in times of great hardships. In this guest column, newcomer to the industry and Retail inMotion’s Chief Technology Officer Iarfhlaith Kelly looks at the history of innovation in the industry and notes some hopeful trends.

Necessity is the mother of all invention

Some would argue that the challenges we are seeing today can be compared to war time. Resilience and ingenuity are often seen going hand-in-hand, and there is no greater example than World War II. The War drove the invention of many technologies we take for granted today. Notably, the early version of the modern computer was famously devised at the UK’s Bletchley Park to help crack the enigma code; ATM machines were invented in the U.S. in 1939; and the modern jet engine was developed in Germany in the 1940s. Fast forward to today, and one could argue that the backdrop of challenges within the aviation industry today are driving another wave of innovations, demonstrating again that necessity really is the mother of all invention. We’re certainly seeing this in the ancillary-revenue business. At Retail inMotion, we have spent the last six 14  |  PAX TECH  |  OCTOBER 2020

months working closely with our customers to develop a suite of new solutions to help the airlines get safely back in the air. These include innovations like pre-order and preselect options for food and beverage; digital menus; Wi-Fi-powered onboard shopping; fully cashless flights using our Point of Sale solution; digital receipts; and even offline card payments made through a passenger’s own device. All these innovations help maintain social distancing onboard and while improving the passenger experience.

The future of onboard retail

We expect these innovations to remain long after the pandemic becomes a distant memory, changing onboard retail forever. Through this lens the crisis could be viewed as an opportunity, where it has accelerated the rate of change across the airline industry and forced it to adopt new technologies that are not only beneficial to passengers but also provide greater margins and less waste for the airlines. Technology advancements tend to only go in one direction. The crisis forced us to rethink our business. Now is the time to double-down on technology and we have accelerated the transition of Vector – our flagship ERP system for the airline industry, to a new cloud-based microservice architecture, made up of

Iarfhlaith Kelly, Chief Technology Officer, Retail inMotion

modern technologies such as Docker, Kubernetes, Kafka, MongoDB, React and others. The investment is starting to pay off. As early as next month we will be making the first phase of this new platform available for beta testing with a selection of customers. As a technology-focused company, we see new possibilities everywhere. And in adjacent industries we are starting to pay more attention. We think technology can bring together passengers, airlines, airport restaurants, shops, and traditional caterers in a way that has never been done before both preflight and inflight. Just like the technologies that emerged during other major global crises, these innovations will improve travel and be here to stay for the long term.


WITHOUT WIRES The Unplugged wireless charger from Cobalt Aerospace was introduced approximately four years ago

When the industry returns to buying mode, many will cast a gaze on what passengers have at home, and one of those new musthaves is a wireless phone charger


t is hard to have a conversation about future aircraft products without it eventually turning to what people use daily in their lives outside the cabin. It has resulted in ubiquitous wireless internet that is sweeping through airline cabins around the world. It has transformed aircraft galleys into gleaming stainless steel stations that could be featured in a fine kitchen store. And, when the time is right, it will no doubt feature wireless device charging for passengers, at the very least in the front of the cabin. Wireless chargers can be seen on the stands at nearly every cabin interiors show, and a few may have taken the first steps from the business jet cabin to the new First Class layouts built for comfort and privacy. Gary Girard, President of Cobalt Aerospace, says nearly all of its Cobalt Unplugged wireless chargers have been retrofitted in business jets from the BBJ on down to medium-sized jets. However, since the company turns much of the installation over to third parties, he says a small number may be flying in a First Class cabin somewhere in the world.


The company claims the Cobalt Unplugged is the first wireless charger designed for the aircraft cabin and the small unit is at home in sidewall ledges, tray tables, credenzas and divans aboard business aircraft. Like most of the wireless chargers on the market the company’s Cobalt Unplugged can charge any Qi (also known as Chee) enabled device. The units can be powered using a DC bus or any suitable seat electronics box, so retrofit is fast and simple. Unplugged is available in both the 5-watt single coil or a 15-watt three coil version. Cobalt, which is based in Norwich, UK, partnered with a company called GDC Technics to develop a product for the company’s wide-body jet completion program. It was one year ago that the Kirkland, Washington-based Astronics introduced a wireless charging module (WCM) for business aviation and rotorcraft, but the company had earlier brought a similar product to the Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg to show to potential airline customers. Part of the team that introduced

and educated the industry on the possibilities of wireless charging was Dennis Markert, Director of Business Development at Astronics. Since the WCM was introduced in 2019, Markert says that front cabin, line fit installations are ongoing at two major aircraft OEM’s for airlines which picked out the product as part of a package of features for inflight entertainment and connectivity by two IFE suppliers. “The form factor of the WCM, lends itself very nicely for First and Business Class seating,” Markert says. But development hasn’t stopped there. Astronics is looking to install a version of the WCM in Economy Class as well. Like other suppliers, Astronics is looking across the landscape and seeing consumers demand for Wireless Charging. More than 70 models of smartphones are now enabled with Qi wireless charging and the stations are becoming an expected amenity. The company named its product the Wireless Charging Module (WCM) and the new product is part of the Astronics’ EmPower® in-seat 110VAC and USB power systems that are flying on more than 280 airlines.  |  PAX TECH  |  15


Peace of mind from ground to sky From online to in the air, a new web-based interactive map allows passengers to assess the pandemic situation at each destination in Etihad Airway’s network by JANE HOBSON

A screenshot of how the interactive travel map appears for passengers on the airline’s website


nderstanding what the destination will offer upon arrival is generally of major importance for travelers booking a flight. With the pandemic evolving in different locations, this is even more important for those looking to get back in the cabin. A new tool from Etihad Airways gives passengers an advance look at the COVID-19 situation in their destination ahead of even boarding the flight. Etihad Airways has partnered with Canadian travel risk company Sitata to launch an interactive travel map on the flag carrier’s website. It allows travelers to access a comprehensive overview of the COVID-19 situation at each destination in the airline’s network. The map uses algorithms to detect travel information from global sources which is then updated on its portal. The system also relies on announcements and updates published on official government websites and media channels. The information is vetted by Sitata’s team of editors and is updated as new reports become available. “The current situation is still very volatile and dynamic, and with new guidelines being implemented on a daily basis – and sometimes even more frequently – it is important

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for us as an airline to support our guests with as much information as possible,” said Frank Meyer, Chief Digital Officer, Etihad Aviation Group, in the company press release. The map provides information that can impact travel arrangements including border restrictions, curfew timings, mandatory precautionary measures, quarantine rules, airport and flight operations, and the number of current active COVID-19 cases in each destination. The launch of interactive travel map comes as Etihad continues to expand its wellness initiatives. The airline announced the “Etihad Wellness” health and hygiene program and customer guide in June, introducing the carrier’s Wellness Ambassadors who provide essential travel information and care for passengers. It also launched the COVID-19 assessment tool across digital platforms in partnership with techco Medicus AI. The 22-question self-administered tool is based on World Health Organization guidelines and helps travelers assess the possibility of their having contracted the virus ahead of planning any travel. For those who do proceed with travel, they must have a PCR (polymerase chain reaction) COVID-19 test to fly with Etihad and present a medical certificate or other relevant documents

clearly stating the type of test and the result. In the cabin, First and Business Class passengers can choose to wear Etihad’s new “snood style” protective wear, treated with MicrobeBARRIER by Buzz. The soft reusable snood is treated with the broad-spectrum antimicrobial treatment and laboratory tested to reduce the presence of germs in fabrics. Despite the pandemic, Etihad is also keeping an eye on meeting the 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations and its commitment to the UAE Food Waste Pledge led by the UAE Ministry of Climate Change and Environment. The carrier is partnering with Singapore food tech startup Lumitics to trial the use of computer vision and machine learning to reduce food waste inflight. It tracks unconsumed meals from Economy Class to highlight patterns across the network which will in turn improve meal planning and reduce operating costs and waste. “Etihad Airways started the pilot with Lumitics earlier this year before global flying was impacted by COVID-19, and as the airline scales up the flight operations again, it is exciting to restart the project and continue the work,” said Mohammad Al Bulooki, Chief Operating Officer, Etihad Aviation Group in the release.

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Fly beyond expectations



CONNECTED Connectivity providers are looking beyond the pandemic to adapt to the rapidly changing industry by SABRINA PIRILLO


ith the initial shock of the pandemic fading, connectivity providers are focusing on the future and bringing innovation and solutions to the forefront. Through the summer, there were announcements of acquisitions, refreshed business plans, super celebrations and industry feedback. It is clear that the pandemic is pushing inflight connectivity to evolve in ways that few would have considered in its early days.

Shifting focus

In late summer, Gogo announced its plans to sell its commercial aviation business to Intelsat for US$400 million. The transaction is expected to be completed by the end of the first quarter of 2021. When it closes, the company’s commercial aviation segment will belong to Intelsat, and Gogo will focus on the inflight connectivity services it provides to the business aviation market as a standalone, public company. “Following a competitive strategic review process, we’re confident this 18  |  PAX TECH  |  OCTOBER 2020

transaction unlocks the full value of the commercial aviation business for shareholders,” said Oakleigh Thorne, Gogo President and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) in the August 31 press release. “With shared values and a clear commitment to working with the commercial aviation team to grow the business, we are confident Intelsat is the right partner.” The transaction will enable Gogo to focus on its profitable business aviation sector by expanding current offerings, launching the Gogo 5G network that’s currently in development, investing further in finding innovative solutions for its customers. “This transaction creates a stronger and more focused Gogo, with the singular strategic imperative of serving the business aviation market with the best inflight connectivity and entertainment products in the world,” Thorne said. “The business aviation market continues its sharp recovery and strong demand growth trajectory, and our segment is exceptionally well-positioned to drive long-term value creation in that industry.”

Gogo has plans to sell its commercial aviation business to Intelsat and focus on launching its Gogo 5G network and other offerings

Super Wi-Fi for everyone

Last month, Qatar Airways launched its 100th aircraft with ‘Super Wi-Fi’; an A350-900. The accomplishment pushes Qatar Airways to the forefront in Asia, the Middle East and Africa for the number of aircraft with super-fast broadband service. To mark the occasion, Qatar is offering 100 days of free onboard Super Wi-Fi connectivity to all passengers. From September 25, 2020 to January 2, 2021, passengers can stay connected inflight free of charge. The service is usually only free for one hour. “Our mission to connect people around the world does not start and end with just travel,” said Akbar Al Baker, Qatar Airways Group Chief Executive, in the September 25 press release. “We understand the importance, especially in recent months, of enabling people to be connected at all times, whether on the ground or 35,000 feet in the air and we are delighted to work with Inmarsat and its GX Aviation.” Qatar Airways is well-equipped with plans to increase and efficiently manage traffic bandwidth to provide a seam-

Qatar Airways launched it 100th aircraft with Super Wi-Fi last month

Qatar is marking the accomplishment of launching its 100th aircraft with Super Wi-Fi by providing 100 days of the service onboard for free

lessly-connected experience, a Qatar Airways spokesperson tells PAX Tech.

Insights from the industry

From April to June 2020, Inmarsat and the Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX) teamed up on an industry poll about the aviation rebound. Entitled FlightPlan: Charting a Course into the Future, the results reveal a surprisingly promising future with a special nod to digitalization as a driving factor of future profitable growth. The results also provide a look at the industry perspective on what is affecting the passenger experience and how the crisis may impact aviation sustainability goals. In the July press release about the poll, Dominic Walters, Vice President, Inmarsat Aviation, said, “Even in a period of unrivalled uncertainty and volatility, there is a true sense of optimism about the shape of the industry in this new world.” With more than 500 global industry professionals responding, the poll found that the rebound is already underway but full recovery may take as much as three years. Just 13 percent believe the aviation

industry was prepared for the crisis. Domestic travel is expected to bounce back quickest, with almost 85 percent predicting it will recover quicker than international travel, which is impacted by border restrictions and quarantines. The International Air Transport Association (IATA) suggests that rising flight volumes are being driven by recovery in domestic markets, such as China. Seven out of 10 respondents expect point-to-point travel will bounce back quicker than hub and spoke routes, with low-cost carriers (LCCs) expected to recover more quickly (55 percent) than full-service carriers (45 percent). Seven percent of those who took park in the survey believe that the bailouts from many governments have done enough to support the industry - so while the crisis is global, national response actions are varied. When asked how the crisis will affect the passenger experience, nearly half (45 percent) of respondents believe it will have only a short-term reduction in investment. Almost a third (32 percent) believe there will be an overall increase. Health and safety measures, such as

those laid out by APEX and IATA, are major factors that could affect the future passenger experience. The FlightPlan report lists enhancing trackability and establishing clear aircraft decontamination procedures as examples of changes to passenger journeys, plus other developments that will come in the future. Eighty-eight percent of respondents expect slower turnarounds and an impact on flight schedules because of extensive cleaning, and 44 percent expect to see empty middle seats – even though IATA contradicted this in May. With the European Union ban on single-use plastics to come into force in 2021 in all member states, the poll reveals there is little agreement about how the pandemic will affect the industry’s path to sustainability. Overall, 36 believe it will accelerate the goal while 47 think it will delay progress. “With a global recession potentially threatening investment in green technology, there was little consensus,” reads the report. Respondents are in agreement, though, that digital technologies and the future of the connected cabin will be major factors driving recovery, “with data analytics, biometrics, artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things set to have the greatest influence on future profitable growth.” Fifty-seven percent see contactless catering as a significant adjustment the future of onboard passenger experience. “These survey results, together with the numerous discussions and debates during FlightPlan, indicate that the COVID-19 crisis may prove a decisive moment for digital transformation in an industry that’s historically been behind the curve, with the vast majority of aviation professionals expecting digital technologies to help drive a stronger return towards profitable growth,” said Philip Balaam, President of Inmarsat Aviation. Inmarsat and APEX are moving ahead with what APEX CEO Dr. Joe Leader calls FlightPlan 2.0, which will be launched in November. The survey is expanding, with APEX and Inmarsat setting a goal of reaching out to 12,000 people in five countries. Leader tells PAX Tech the survey “gives a taste of what passengers are feeling in the wake of COVID-19. Because we recognize that passenger’s sentiment is shifting, we need to address their concerns and also think positively about what they need in their inflight experience.”  |  PAX TECH  |  19


Looking ahead This overview of the 2020 CarTrawler Yearbook of Ancillary Revenue Report lays out what 2020 may look like for the industry



s 2020 begins its wind to a close, the industry is looking for projections on what is in store for the future. When it comes to ancillary revenue, IdeaWorksCompany projects that the strong earnings in 2019 could provide some protection for the lean year that will no doubt be 2020. The brand development, research and market analysis company released the 140-page 2020 Yearbook of Ancillary Revenue at the end of September. The annual publication, sponsored by travel technology solution provider CarTrawler, provides information on ancillary revenue, a la carte services and commission-based travel products for the worldwide airline industry. The report contains the ancillary revenue for 81 airlines presented as a total revenue, a percentage of airline revenue, and on a per-passenger basis. The results reflect 2019 disclosed financial activity and individual airline projections are offered for 2020. In the year 2019, ancillary revenue accounted for 12.1 percent of total airline

20  |  PAX TECH  |  OCTOBER 2020

revenue, which is a significant increase above the 10.7 percent for 2018. The 81 airlines in the 2020 report represented 68.6 percent of the International Air Transport Association’s worldwide airline industry traffic estimate for 2019. Sales from non-ticket sources in 2019 jumped 20 percent for the top 10 airlines, while 2020 results show a la carte rates are holding. US airlines continue to take in the most ancillary revenue primarily through frequent flyer programs and co-branded credit cards to go with a la carte services for passengers. Top five airlines for total ancillary 2019 revenue were; Ryanair Group at US$3.3 billion, Southwest Airlines at $4.4 billion; Delta Air Lines at $6.1 billion; United Airlines at $6.5 billion and American Airlines at $7.4 billion. Low-cost carriers traditionally dominate the category of ancillary revenue as a percent of total revenue. The top five airlines in the category were Wizz Air at 41.1 percent; Allegiant at 41.2 percent; Frontier at 42.8 percent;

As part of the CarTrawler series, this year takes a look at 2019 and projections for 2020

Spirit Airlines at 44.9 percent and Viva Aerobus at 47.6 percent. The 2020 ancillary revenue projections are based upon the individual airline rates calculated for 2019. Research was conducted to assess how 2020 is comparing to last year. Second quarter 2020 financial disclosures collected from 17 airlines revealed the ancillary revenue average among these carriers was 21.7 percent for the first quarter of 2019 and 22.1 percent for 2020. Half the carriers showed increased ancillary revenue for 2020, while the other half showed decreases. The yearbook also includes tables which rank the 81 airlines by ancillary revenue as a percentage of total airline revenue and dollars per passenger. “COVID-19 has had an enormous impact on the travel industry but there is also cause for optimism,” said Aileen McCormack, Chief Commercial Officer at CarTrawler. “Thankfully, a significant number of the world’s largest airlines have realized the value of investing in a superior ancillary revenue platform, which is apparent by the outstanding results we see from last year and which has cushioned the financial blow of COVID. The travel industry has work to do to regain the losses caused by the pandemic, but we have strong foundations on which we can recover and thrive. By working together, we can drive recovery into the next decade.”


Perfecting protection

The masks made of nylon fabric conform to Oeko-Text standard 100 with antibacterial and water repellent features

This interiors provider is launching a range of protective equipment for multiple aspects of the cabin, from seating and sanitizer to gear for crew by SABRINA PIRILLO The seat covers are made with non-woven fabric and premium quality recyclable material

T The ABC International gel sanitizer rack can be installed in any location on the aircraft and fits any gel bottle up to 500ml

o help build passenger confidence and provide a safe cabin environment, Italian design company ABC International has developed a range of disposable seat covers and cabin placards kits. “We believe at this stage we need to bring passengers back on board, despite the limitations,” says Alberto D’ambrosio, Chief Executive Officer at ABC International. “The more they see a safe cabin environment the more they will be happy to fly.” Made from non-woven fabric and premium recyclable material, the seat covers are available in a variety of colors and can be personalized with the airline logo. They are specifically designed to be changed easily after every flight, with an elastic edge that fits around any economy seat. This helps create the “perception of hygiene” in the cabin, says Olindo Spatola, HDO at ABC. The cabin placard kits are made to order and are used to help airlines enforce precautions in the cabin, such as ‘Wear the mask,’ ‘Wash your hands,’ and ‘Keep distance.’ Airlines can customize the placards, which have 21J approval for installation. The company has also created reusable protective face masks for cabin crew. They are made of nylon fabric which

conform to Oeko-Text standard 100 with antibacterial and water repellent features. “As passengers begin to travel again, a continued safe and pleasant cabin environment experience is vital,” said a release from ABC. “To assist with this achievement, gloves, disposable masks, thermo-scanners (thermometers) are all extremely important tools to protect passengers while ensuring comfortable levels on board have been achieved.” ABC International plans to launch its cabin protective equipment products on its upcoming business-to-business e-commerce platform in the near future. Although the products are still in the launch phase, they have been designed following with a material compliance study and are ready to fly. The launch of these products comes on the heels of the reveal of ABC’s sanitizer gel rack. The rack supports good hygiene and risk reduction during- and post-COVID-19. The rack can be installed in any location on the aircraft and is designed to fit any gel bottle up to 500ml. The vertical slider with smart-locking system makes the rack compliant with CS 25.789(a) requirement pertaining to the item of mass retaining. The design can be customized with the airline logo.  |  PAX TECH  |  21


Discovery through

design SEKISUI KYDEX tells PAX Tech about the features in its virtual innovation centers developed to help make the creative journey easier for designers

KYDEX surfaceGrip was developed inside the appLab to fulfill the need for anti-slip low gloss material for aircraft interiors


ncreasing passenger expectations require innovative ideas, technology, and materials early in the design process. To help designers on this journey, SEKISUI KYDEX has developed two innovation centers, appLab™ and designLab®. Inside these virtual labs, designers can trial different technologies offered by company. “The services are not only focused on products and process, but are designed to foster discovery and exploration,” says Bernadette Chupela, Customer Experience Manager, SEKISUI KYDEX. “Customers can use vivid colors, textiles, imagery, technology, and real-world examples as they create their virtual prototype. Utilizing technology like this, the appLab and designLab teams at SEKISUI KYDEX aspire to improve concept, design, and delivery for customers.” Here’s a snapshot of what is featured in the innovation centers:

KYDEX® surfaceGrip

Recently developed inside appLab to meet the need for an anti-slip low gloss material for aircraft interiors, new KYDEX surfaceGrip (SG) product line opens the door to new design possibilities. While combining custom integral color, Infused Imaging™ technology, and a tactile experience with soft touch 22  |  PAX TECH  |  OCTOBER 2020

texture, KYDEX 5555+SG also stands up to harsh disinfectants and will not stain, making it ideal for tray table inlays.

KYDEX ION Technology™

KYDEX ION Technology™ is 99 percent effective at inhibiting the growth of stain and odor causing bacteria on KYDEX Thermoplastics. KYDEX ION Technology interferes with bacteria DNA, preventing stain- and odor-causing bacteria from multiplying on the treated thermoplastic sheet. KYDEX ION Technology is an antimicrobial treatment incorporated into the sheet, which helps keep the treated surface cleaner between cleanings. Many KYDEX Thermoplastics are engineered to withstand daily contact with harsh disinfectants and chemical reagents. Durable, chemical- and stain-resistant, KYDEX Thermoplastics are suitable for high-touch areas of the aircraft cabin, such as tray tables, seat backs, armrests, IFE bezels, privacy panels, monuments, and lavatory surfaces.

Infused Imaging Technology Inside the designLab, Crystal Cabin Award-winning Infused Imaging puts color and imagery into thermoplastic material rather than on it. It is a proprietary process that embeds imagery into

thermoplastic material and gives designers, seat manufacturers and airlines the power to create bespoke environments using color, images and texture without sacrificing strength and durability.


The fully compliant KYDEX FST product line expands possibilities for interior applications. The FST suite includes KYDEX FST (opaque), KYDEX FST 03 (pearlescent), KYDEX FST CTL (colored translucent), and KYDEX FST CLR (clear). It is formulated to meet all OEM requirements for aircraft interior components. It delivers excellent formability and a sophisticated finish while meeting the flammability and smoke development requirements outlined in Federal Aviation Regulations and toxicity requirements for Airbus and Boeing.

3D Visualization

Inside designLab, designers can explore 3D virtualization with X-Rite’s Total Appearance Capture™ (TAC) Ecosystem and KeyShot® 3D Rendering and Animation Software. X-Rite’s TAC Ecosystem provides a high level of realism in digital material capture and 3D virtualization, helping close the gap between real and virtual materials through full appearance measurement.


Hygieneinspired ideas ANA is moving ahead with a new touchless lavatory door in partnership with JAMCO Corporation after testing the concept in one of its lounges by RICK LUNDSTROM


n April, Katsunori Maki, Cabin Products and LOPA Manager at All Nippon Airways, was watching a news broadcast that featured a segment about a convenience store that had modified its refrigerators to allow shoppers to open the doors with their feet. The broadcast coincided with the same ideas that planners at the airline had been batting around to create a touchless way for passengers to exit and enter areas of the cabin while keeping their hands clean. Soon, the airline

24  |  PAX TECH  |  OCTOBER 2020

Visitors at the ANA Lounge at Haneda Airport had the chance to try the new lavatory door developed by the airline and JAMCO Corp.

hooked up with a well-known supplier of cabin products also based in Japan that had also been working on similar ideas. The two partners hammered out a design for a lavatory door, that the airline has been testing at its ANA Lounge at Haneda Airport in Tokyo and seeking comments from visitors. ANA worked with JAMCO Corporation to develop a doorknob, which is really not a doorknob but a mechanism that can be levered open and closed with a passenger’s elbow. Development started in May, and by July a prototype was in the ANA Lounge. Until September of this year, the airline had collected feedback from more than 500 people who visited the lounge. According to ANA’s Products and Services Department, more than 70 percent reacted positively to the door concept, which has prompted the airline to move

ahead installing the design on aircraft. Adapting a lavatory can be done in less than an hour. To put the new system in place installers replace the lock knob and fix the door handle into the current “door pull” recess area with a screw. With the touchless system installed passengers can open and close the door without touching the surface after washing their hands. Once installed, the airline expects the feature to be a permanent part of the aircraft cabin. According to JAMCO, the company produces roughly 50 percent of the world’s aircraft lavatories. It is the sole supplier of lavatories for Boeing’s widebody aircraft. In addition to the touchless door for ANA, JAMCO has developed a touchless lavatory faucet. Now available for lavatories in the 787 is a JAMCOdeveloped touchless flush switch which is installed as standard equipment.


Hidden solutions This company tells PAX Tech how aircraft humidity and condensation control solutions may play a major role in getting passengers into the cabin by JANE HOBSON


hrases such as ‘building passenger confidence’ and ‘passenger perceptions of safety’ seem to be among the industry’s hottest buzzwords right now, and rightly so. Companies and suppliers from every sector are working diligently to support the much-needed return to air travel, from seating innovations that promote social distancing to connectivity advancements to support a touchless cabin. A Nyköping, Sweden-based company provides an important solution to create a healthy cabin environment. CTT Systems supplies two subsystems that work in unison to deliver optimal air quality and humidity in the cabin: The Zonal Drying system and the Cabin Humidification system. These systems work to prevent a cabin with air too dry for passengers to effectively fight off viruses and bacteria, says Peter Landquist, Vice President of Sales and Marketing at CTT Systems. The Zonal Drying system reduces the fuselage condensation that builds during flight. When landing, this frozen layer

melts, resulting in up to 300 kilograms of excess water. This has negative effects on reliability of parts such as computers, antennas, sensors and connectors, explains Landquist, who has been with CTT Systems for 27 years. The system distributes dry air effectively, preventing humid air from reaching the cold fuselage structures, benefitting both the aircraft and the environment, he says. The Cabin Humidification system increases cabin humidity to a level similar to that experienced on the ground. Humidifiers can be installed in specific zones, such as First and Business Class, which are prone to dryness since there are fewer passengers. Water from the aircraft’s potable supply is applied to a humidifier pad integrated in the air conditioner supply duct, adding humidity to the ventilation system. Though it is hidden from view, passengers and crew benefit from the result of experiencing less dryness in the mouth and nose. “During a long-haul flight, dry cabin air gradually dehydrates the mucus membrane which increases

human susceptibility to bacteria and viruses,” Landquist says. “Bottom-line is that a weakened immune system not only increases risks during flight but also, perhaps more importantly, upon arrival at destination. This [should be] considered very important to bring back passenger’s travel confidence.” CTT Systems has more than 2,500 humidifiers in operation on aircraft. Lufthansa German Airlines which is installed on 14 A380s in First Class. Other major airlines have selected the system; two for its A350s Business Class cabins and two others for its 777-9 First and Business Class. The company has provided approximately 100 retrofitted VIP inflight Cabin Humidification systems for various 737s, 321neos and more. “For the airline industry, it is very important to present sustainable solutions to reduce the risk for passengers to get infected by viruses or bacteria during or directly after a long-haul flight,” Landquist says. “Using a humidification system to establish a ground-equal cabin environment is a long-term solution, that I believe is what the industry is looking for.” The company is focused on adapting the Cabin Humidification system for business jets and believes these solutions will be integrated in the cabin air system for years to come.

CTT Systems Cabin Humidification system process

CTT Systems Zonal Drying system process

26  |  PAX TECH  |  OCTOBER 2020

T H E M I D D L E E A S T ’ S O N LY A I R C R A F T I N T E R I O R S E V E N T

It’s what’s inside that counts


2-3 March 2021

Za’abeel Hall 2–3 Dubai World Trade Centre, UAE


W W W. A I M E . A E R O




Virtual but vivacious

Future Travel Experience Founder and Chief Executive Officer Daniel Coleman shares an update on what can be expected at the upcoming FTE APEX Virtual Expo by JANE HOBSON

FTE Founder and Chief Executive Officer Daniel Coleman on what to expect at the FTE APEX Virtual Expo

F Daniel Coleman, Founder and CEO, FTE

28  |  PAX TECH  |  OCTOBER 2020

uture Travel Experience (FTE) and the Airline Passenger Experience Association (APEX) announced the FTE APEX Virtual Expo in mid-July, but the pandemic has continued to control every aspect of travel since. Fortunately, much has developed in a positive direction for the event since PAX spoke with FTE Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and Founder Daniel Coleman and APEX CEO Joe Leader in the summer. Coleman tells PAX Tech that the event now has thousands of registered attendees, more than 120 of which are representatives from airlines. More than 50 exhibitors have confirmed, including Airbus, SATS and Monty’s Bakehouse, an airport that will show off its robotic capabilities along with developments from other airlines, airports and suppliers. “It’s the right product for the times we’re living in and people have really got behind it,” he says. “Due to the postponement of major physical shows in the first half of 2021, the event is starting to broaden out even further to cover many aspects of air transport.”

Joe Leader, CEO, APEX/ IFSA

The December 8 and 9 live event, themed ‘Transforming air transport post-COVID-19,’ can be accessed for no cost around the clock and revisited for a month after. The content will be tailored to three regions: Asia-Pacific, Europe, Middle East and Africa and the Americas. It will also be co-located with the IFSA Onboard Hospitality Virtual Expo. FTE and APEX are working with a Dubai-based company called vFairs which specializes in online events and conferences. During the two-day live event, participants will be able to talk with exhibitors through real time messaging and video calls. They can schedule time at a company’s virtual stand to view products and services. And, the virtual expo is accessible any time, making it ideal for all time zones. The virtual exhibition will include online halls dedicated to airport and inflight products, services and solutions, and, what organizers call a dedicated Startup Zone. Attendees can navigate around the networking arena, with table interactions limited to six participants at a time to help keep conversations manageable and clear. “To me this event was always about creating meaningful engagement, so I want to champion our Premium Attendee Virtual Networking Sessions,” Coleman says. The sessions will run on a number of occasions on the show days and work to deliver an authentic human experience that makes the approach to virtual networking feel as “natural and fun” as possible, he explains. The speaker lineup includes CEOs from Delta Air Lines, Alaska Airlines, Avianca, Los Angeles World Airport and other executives. The event will host an exclusive think tank focused on business model transformation post-COVID-19. The think tank is made up by senior executives at Virgin Atlantic, easyJet, Pittsburgh Airport, AirAsia and Bangalore Airport. “That’s a really exciting initiative that I’m delighted that we’ve been able to get people behind to start sharing some original ideas and thoughts on how we can drive recovery,” Coleman says. It also offers offer a ‘trail blazer’ innovation showcase, a biometrics summit, and a tech-enhanced digital workshop deliv-

ered by content creation company Neutral Digital, which will focus on digital technology such as AR, VR and Mixed Reality. And, broadcasted live will be the APEX/IFSA (International Flight Services Association) Board of Governors meeting. Plus, the Expo offers a 60-hour innovation show called the Aviation vs. COVID-19 Initiative. The goal of the show is to bring experts together in the virtual setting to collaborate on ideas to reimagine the future of air travel and the air travel experience in its entirety, Coleman explains. The top three winning teams of Aviation vs. COVID-19 Initiative will be invited to present their ideas at the Virtual Expo. IFSA and the Airline Catering Association (ACA), both strategic partners to the FTE APEX Virtual Expo, are meeting weekly to develop a ‘Shared Global Guidance Response’ to the pandemic. The response will be shared exclusively via the Expo. In a mid-October interview, Leader told PAX one of the triumphs of APEX and IFSA working together was the “government action initiative” earlier this year that resulted in US$3 billion in funding from the initial CARES Act for related industries. A similar initiative was stalled in Congress in early October, which calls for funding in the area of US$28 billion, with US$3 billion set aside for caterers and suppliers. If approved, the funding would be a lifeline, carrying the industry through to the end of next March. “We want to see governments helping support an industry that they have stopped from moving for far too long,” Leader says. “We need to get back to more normal travel. It is through no fault of their own that these airlines have been stopped on the vast majority of their routes.” With some mixed emotions about the how far virtual events can go, Coleman says he is confident the FTE APEX Virtual Expo allows for networking and product showcasing similar, if not superior, to in-person gatherings. “I smile when I read comments from these ‘King Canute’style characters who say virtual events can’t work and you can’t effectively showcase products or network at these events. But I can assure you that you can absolutely can,” he says, adding that it allows attendees and exhibitors to achieve a lot more at a fraction of the cost. For example, numerous members of the company can attend for free, allowing for more networking and sharing of insights and ideas. “The world has changed and everybody must change the way do things to survive.” When physical events return in the next couple of years, Coleman says they will be hybridized virtual expos with digital showcasing and engagement a massive component going forward. “The industry is hurting right now, so the recovery is going to be a lot slower than we all expected due to, in my opinion, governments not putting enough priority on supporting aviation and ways to change these quarantines,” Coleman says. “The truth is, physical events or client visit will not return with any great conviction until the second half of 2021 at the earliest. The industry needs new ways to connect, in the meantime continuing to meet en masse – and digital is the answer to that.” The Virtual Expo was due to be followed by the FTE APEX Asia Expo set for February 3 to 4 in Singapore at the Marina Bay Sands. Coleman says this Expo has since been postponed to its traditional time November 9 to 10, 2021.  |  PAX TECH  |  29


A DATE IN DUBAI The Dubai World Trade Centre where the more than 4,700 industry players congregated last year for Air Interiors Middle East

Aircraft Interiors Middle East organizers have their eyes set on an early March event that brings together thousands to the bustling aviation region


• Invisible protective glove with virucidal, bactericidal and fungicidal effect 99,999% (>Log5) • Up to two hours effectiveness even after multiple hand washing

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30  |  PAX TECH  |  OCTOBER 2020


ast year, more than 4,700 people walked the aisles of the Dubai World Trade Centre sampling the latest in onboard equipment and maintenance, repair and overhaul capabilities of many of the world’s key players. Organizers at Tarsus Group will again be hosting Aircraft Interiors Middle East March 2 to 3, 2021. This will be the 12th year that leading airlines and industry influencers come together to explore the latest advancements in passenger safety, comfort and entertainment. In addition to the stands and networking, organizers plan more than eight hours of complementary discussions that focus on cabin sanitation, passenger communication, cabin modification, new technologies and contingency planning. Three new events are planned: Aircraft Interiors Connect is a new networking service that allows people to book meetings with registered visitors and exhibitors. An airline-led roundtable discussion will address challenges and opportunities in the current market. Finally, AIME will be recognizing peers and industry trend setters this year with an awards event. AIME is co-located with MRO Middle East 2021, the annual exhibition for commercial aviation maintenance. This year, Tarsus Group estimates that there will be approximately 330 exhibitors and delegates from 73 countries. More than 400 attendees from 68 airlines will be visiting Dubai in March. Tarsus Group estimates that 74 percent of those attendees have purchasing responsibility for the respective businesses.


The industry’s best virtual roundtable discussion series, featuring senior executives and representatives from the industry’s most iconic companies Share key insights, learnings and experiences from your sector in the PAX Panel: All episodes available online Featured in digital editions of PAX International and PAX Tech magazines Share on your website and social channels Attract new clients PREVIOUS PANELISTS INCLUDE:



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 Bacoban – Frasers Aerospace: Bacoban for Aerospace has received flight certifications for use aboard all types and sizes of aircraft and lasts for 10 days after being applied to a surface, combating most germs and viruses, including COVID-19. Now available for the US and Canada from its authorized distributor Torch III Aviation.

 D.C.D.® Cleaner, MicroBLOC® and SOAP line – FloraLife: EPA registered disinfectants from FloraLife are available in concentrate and ready-to-use spray, and the D.C.D. Cleaner is a one-step cleaner disinfectant. These products are for use on hard nonporous surfaces throughout the cabin. The SOAP line offers liquid and powder single-use soap packets to help maintain passenger cleanliness and protection.

  Sanitizer gel rack – ABC International: This sanitizer gel rack supports the need for hygiene and prevention during- and post-COVID-19. It can be installed in any location on the aircraft and is designed to fit any gel bottle up to 50ml. The vertical slider with smart-locking system makes the rack compliant with CS 25.789(a) requirement. The design can be customized with the airline logo.

 Mirabowl Q and Mirabowl QC – Mirandy: The first form of the product is a lavatory bowl cleaner and deodorizer that does not harm aluminum surfaces. The quaternary disinfectant in the Mirabowl Q disinfects and cleans the entire lavatory bowl and the Mirabowl QC is a concentrated version of it.

 Masks and snoods range – FORMIA: The company’s masks and snoods range have an advanced fabric treatment that provides an effective, lasting and continual germ-resistant surface to protect and care for passengers. The fabrics stay cleaner and fresher for longer periods and can be washed up to 30 times while still retaining their antibacterial effectiveness.

32  |  PAX TECH  |  OCTOBER 2020

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 MediSeptic – AviationScouts: MediSeptic is a purifying touchless dispenser for hands. In combination with the MediSeptic Anti-infectant A50 solution, it offers two-hour protection in less than 30 seconds. It can be reapplied safely throughout the passenger journey – airport, boarding and inflight.

 MicrobeBARRIER – BUZZ: Buzz has launched a broad-spectrum antimicrobial treatment that is lab tested and proven to reduce the presence of germs in fabrics. MicrobeBARRIER fabric treatment protects against bacteria, mildew, mold and odors.

 Antimicrobial clearcoat – Signature Plating: The durable clearcoat with an antimicrobial additive protects decorative finishes. The antimicrobial inhibitor is suspended in the clearcoat and covers the whole part. It has been tested, passed and certified to ISO 22196:2011 to reduce the microbes on the parts surface.

 The LSEAT – LSEAT: The LSEAT is an Economy Class passenger seat that converts from sitting to sleep mode without the use of electricity or need for crew assistance. The seat cushion moves downward approximately 40 degrees at the front allowing a leg and foot rest to extend, offering a comfortable position for sleep.

 International Water-Guard – IWG-UVL1: This water disinfection unit uses germicidal LEDs that emit UV light in the UV-C spectrum to render pathogens that may be in the aircraft water supply harmless, ensuring the aircraft’s drinking water is free of bacteria and viruses. The device can be installed quickly in the water line, at the spigot or faucet.

34  |  PAX TECH  |  OCTOBER 2020


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