Bombardier: Global 7000 Seats Bring Cloud-like Comfort
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by Matt Thurber - April 30, 2018, 9:50 AM - AINonline
Bombardier Business Aircraft unveiled the centerpiece of the soon-to-be-certified Global 7000, the ultra-long-range jet's Nuage passenger seat, on April 29 at the Milken Institute Global Conference 2018 in Los Angeles. Under development for seven years, the seat—named after the French word for "cloud"—breaks new ground in what Bombardier terms "furniture engineering," an application of ergonomic principles to a feature of business jets.
Differences in the Nuage seat center on the way the human body adapts when seated. The most immediately apparent feature is that when the seat back is reclined, the seat pan on which the passenger sits dips down in the rear. This addresses a significant ergonomic problem with airplane seats, according to Tim Fagan, manager of industrial design—that the body is pushed forward when the seat back reclines, pushing the passenger's back and rear away from contact with the seat.
The reason it is so difficult to sleep when seated upright is that a body's muscles cannot relax when struggling to hold the body vertically. Tilting the back of the seat helps, but only if the body maintains maximum contact with the seat's cushions. By dipping the pan down while the seat back reclines, the cushions can cradle the critical portion of the passenger's body, allowing the muscles to relax more fully.
At the same time, the head must be comfortably supported, and with a fixed headrest, this isn't always possible for people of different shapes and sizes. The solution to this problem looks simple but required much thought and testing.