March 3, 2024

Cabin humidity

Post pandemic inflight air quality has become more important than ever, Stuart Forster discovers the benefits of cabin humidifiers

Keeping aircraft cabin humidity as close to sea level conditions as possible benefits both crew members and passengers, and in recent months specialists in this field have seen an uptake in the use of humidifiers onboard to help.

Notably, maintaining humidity means passengers are less likely to suffer from the fatigue caused by breathing dry air during long flights. And as dry cabin air impairs the senses of smell and taste, humid air means passengers are more receptive to aromas and tastes. This in turn impacts the salt and sugar content needed in food and drink served onboard and can impact the passengers’ perception of the flavours served to them. 

Good humdity control has a positive impact on people’s sense of well-being, particularly after long-haul flights. “The beneficial health aspects of humidification are undisputed,” says Ola Häggfeldt, the Chief Commercial Officer of humidity experts, CTT Systems. He suggests people sleep better, get less jetlag and suffer fewer infections caused by their immune system being weakened inflight.

Business jets

“In recent months CTT Systems has noted an upswing in the uptake of its humidifiers on large business jets such as the Airbus ACJ TwoTwenty and Bombadier Global 7500 plus VIP jets,” says Häggfeldt. 

He explains that the CTT Humidifier Onboard System increases cabin humidity, improving the well-being of crew members and passengers. First they were installed on flight decks and then in premium cabins. 

Based in Sweden

Headquartered in Nyköping, the Swedish company has manufactured humidification systems since 2000. CTT Systems became involved in its first operations engineering programme, aboard the Airbus A380, in 2003. It is currently participating in similar assessments aboard the A350 and A350F as well as Boeing’s 777X and 787 widebody airliners.

“Almost all long-haul aircraft now have humidifiers on their flight deck,” explains Häggfeldt.

In addition to more than 3,500 humidifiers, over 3,000 CTT Anti-Condensation systems have been installed. The latter tackles condensation in the fuselage, helping achieve weight loss benefits which in turn reduce fuel burn and carbon emissions.

Attaining optimal relative humidity, it seems, influences both the well-being of people and the planet.