Saturday,  January 28, 2023  8:30 am

This new plane seat design could be the answer to social distancing

This new plane seat design could be the answer to social distancing
Christine Hogg

Christine Hogg is the Associate Digital Editor at PAX Global Media. Prior to joining PAX, she obtained her Honours BA in Journalism from the University of Toronto. Upon graduating, she went on to write for several travel publications while travelling the world. Her longest trip was a three-week stint in Europe, and the shortest was a 16-hour adventure in Iceland. Get in touch:

As the aviation industry continues to evolve in response to COVID-19, airlines are continuing to reinvent their product to align with the changing needs of passengers.

Some airlines have blocked the sale of the middle seat on aircraft to encourage responsible social distancing.

But one company has gone the extra mile and come up with a unique plane seat concept that could be the answer.

No more middle seat

Designed by aerospace manufacturer Safran and transportation technology company Universal Movement, the seat, called Interspace Lite, separates the aisle and window passenger from one another using a curved device. So, rather than just not sell the middle seat, it's rendered completely unusable, but it's also solid, (not a transparent shield) so you can't see your fellow passenger.

Production on the seat design could start as early as this summer, Travel and Leisure reports.

A costly solution?

The Interspace Lite is just one of the latest inventions to hit the aviation industry. Back in April, Italian manufacturer Aviointeriors came up with two new airplane seats of its own, one that features a traditional glass shield, and another that positions the centre seat backwards.

Though the idea is nice, not everyone supports modifying the middle seat—IATA has previously warned that as a result of airlines slashing their capacity by one third, ticket prices may go up as less seats become available.

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