The Crystal Cabin Awards 2023 mark an exciting new trend in cabin design: eVTOLs, or electric vertical take-off and landing aircraft, are the focus of four cabin concepts submitted to this year’s awards. With hundreds of eVTOL aircraft currently in development worldwide, companies are seeking to make their mark with a cabin that differentiates their offering from the competition. Seeking to capitalise on the promise of clean, sustainable and comfortable advanced air mobility, Almadesign/EVE Air Mobility, Hyundai Transys, Lilium and Supernal have created not only visually arresting designs but also engineered new approaches to the practical logistics of using eVTOLs.
Almadesign and EVE Air Mobility: eVTOL Mobility Concept
Almadesign and EVE Air Mobility have submitted an eVTOL aircraft cabin with a major focus on functionality, opting for an extra-wide access door and two fixed as well as two folding seats that can be configured to accommodate a wheelchair. This concept also concentrates on sensory involvement, using sustainable interior materials like natural leather and wool, citrus scents, customized soundscapes and a variety of “moods” for various flight phases delivered via a large screen panel on the ceiling. Its creators have paid special attention to a reassuring ambience for passengers, an interesting differentiator.
Hyundai Transys: HT-01 Urban Air Mobility Cabin Concept
A striking feature of Hyundai Transys’s HT-01 concept is the ability to instantly re-configure the four seats between 2x2 seat rows and a 4-seat facing group. The seatback in the forward seat pair incorporates a hinge mechanism that simply tilts the seatback to face in the desired direction. A flip-over harness secures the passenger equally securely in either configuration. Hyundai’s designers also added an option to provide more privacy for individual passengers, integrating a mesh screen that can be lowered between seat pairs as needed. Practicality and efficiency play an important role here; the simple cabin layout speeds cleaning and maintenance, supporting fast turnaround times.
Lilium: Pioneer Edition
Mirroring the distinctiveness of its approach to propulsion, Lilium has submitted a design concept for its premium “Pioneer Edition” cabin, a special version limited to 50 aircraft. The designers opted for panoramic views, a customizable cabin as well as sustainable fabrics and materials. The “Space Sphere” concept is designed for an expansive, open feeling as passengers jet across the city at up to 250 km/h. The ceiling window floods the cabin with light, with personalised options including a plug-in bar; integrated rails let users further adapt the interior to their needs.
Supernal Uplift, a universal travel strategy
Supernal has created Uplift, a multi-element eVTOL concept that is agnostic about its passengers’ mobility and sensory requirements. The MultiModal Wheelchair auto-fits into the cabin yet can also be used with other forms of transport like train or bus. The Luggage Restraint System is configurable to provide the required amount of space to accommodate users of the MultiModal Wheelchair. The concept is rounded off by a Universal Boarding Ramp that auto-docks with the aircraft and is designed with the needs of visibility-impaired passengers. The designs emphasise speed and efficiency of the system, aiming to make it fast and easy to reconfigure the cabin as needed.
The Innovations of The Year: Live Awards Ceremony on 6 June 2023 in Hamburg
The Crystal Cabin Award, an initiative of the Hamburg Aviation cluster network, is awarded in eight categories: "Cabin Concepts", "Cabin Systems", "Health & Safety", "IFEC & Digital Services", "Material and Components", "Passenger Comfort", "Sustainable Cabin" and "University".
For each category, the 28 experts will select three finalists to be announced in May 2023. Participating for the first time: Wahli Ong, VP Product Innovation at Singapore Airlines. With Mariya Stoyanova, Director Product Development at jetBlue, the Crystal Cabin Award Association welcomes another renowned US airline to its jury group. The finalists will have the opportunity to present their concepts in person to the jury at the world's leading trade fair for aircraft cabins, the Aircraft Interiors Expo (6-8 June 2023 in Hamburg). The winners of the Crystal Cabin Award 2023 will be announced on the evening of 6 June at a gala dinner at the Hamburg Chambers of Commerce.