July 25, 2024

Inflight Canada showcases accessibility solution at AIX

Inflight Canada was established in 1976 as a cabin integrator for passenger systems and was present at the 2024 AIX in Hamburg, Germany.

“After nearly 50 years of experience installing systems, you get a really good feel for where the gaps and pain points are. That’s what drives our own product development,” said Christopher Colgrave, Director – Commercial Programmes at Inflight Canada, at the company’s stand at AIX.

“At the show, we’re focused on our latest generation of product, Flex. Flex is built of three main tenets: flexibility of installation, flexibility of configuration and flexibility of future upgrades,” he added.

Colgrave explained that Inflight Canada’s power system is designed for flexibility. Today that can be for powering phones and iPads, in the future that may also encompass laptops and other devices. Clients can mix and match. That could mean USB-A power points now and USB-C in the future.

Accessibility for all

“We’re trying to make things more accessible for everybody. One major airline in the US approached us explained passengers who have certain disabilities have a hard time adjusting their air fans and reading lights. So we designed PASS, the Passenger Accessibility and Services System, and brought that right to the seat,” said Colgrave.

Typically, on a narrow-bodied aeroplane, buttons for the lights and air ventilation are close enough for most able-bodied people to reach up and make the adjustments they need. Wheelchair users, however, can’t necessarily do that.

“So we developed this system, originally just to control the lights but have adapted it to control other things, including the airflow. You can feel the braille on the buttons. We have brought that functionality right down to the seat,” explained Colgrave.

“What we’re trying to do is put control back in the hands of all passengers, not just the majority who have full mobility,” he added.

Gaming and wellness

Inflight Canada was demonstrating a seat, still in its conceptual stage, featuring lightweight electromagnetic technology. Electromagnetic actuators enable the seat to vibrate.  

This can enhance gaming experiences during long-haul flights, interactive entertainment and control the intensity of massages for inflight wellness experiences.