Star Alliance will debut its new common seat platform on three carriers over the next year. Air China, Austrian Airlines and Lufthansa will roll-out the Star Plus seat, which has been developed as a joint platform for the alliance members.

"We have a product and the first deliveries will be this year," explained Star Alliance director strategic sourcing Steve Collard, speaking after a panel debate during the Cabin Innovation & Strategies For The Future conference here in Hamburg yesterday.

The long-haul economy seat platform is based on the B/E Aerospace Pinnacle design. "The overall structure will be very similar [across the carriers]," he says, but notes they will differ in aspects like seat coverings and in-flight entertainment.

The product originated after 10 Star members worked together to research the possibility of getting synergies through the project. "A group of members came together to see how can we influence this as an alliance. It is not our intention to have the same product and brand across all its members," he adds, but notes the aim was to develop a single platform. Other Star carriers may also join the three launch customers.

"At this point we are focused on seats and its peripheral parts," adds Collard, noting the alliance is also looking at other areas around the seat for joint procurement including in-flight entertainment.

Source: Flight Daily News