Stelia Sogerma hopes to maintain passenger harmony with its new Celeste seating concept for business- and premium-economy-class cabins.

The concept involves a fixed-position seat back and cushion that reclines by rocking like a cradle within a rigid frame, keeping the passenger's personal space intact. Additionally, suggests head of cabin interior marketing Claire Nurcombe, the fixed-position seat provides superior support for the lower back and legs compared with traditional reclining designs.

A 12in (30cm) touchscreen – or 16in in the business version – is built into the frame, so it remains in position regardless of how the passenger in front adjusts their seat.

The concept also addresses customisation challenges, as features such as bottle holders and laptop pouches can be added or removed.

Aircraft Interiors is Stelia's first exhibition outing under its new name, adopted at year-end with the merger of two Airbus Group's interiors unit Sogerma and aerostructures specialist Aerolia. Nurcombe says there was always some natural overlap between the two, particularly in composites, and credits the merger with removing some duplication while giving the 6,000-plus-employee unit a stronger research and development presence.

She adds that as a more efficient operation, Stelia is in good position to exploit the natural industrial advantages accruing to an in-house supplier over external vendors of buyer-furnished equipment.

An example today, she says, is the strain on the supply chain created by moves from Airbus and Boeing to update their A330 and 777 models – now, with near-term aircraft delivery slots opening up as some customers hold off for the updated models, the lead time for aircraft can be shorter than for some seating options.

But while some customers will always want to take charge of cabin specification, Airbus Group's push to provide a growing range of in-house, catalogue options is a means of keeping ahead of the assembly operation.

Source: Flight Daily News