Repose: An Economy Class Aircraft Cabin Designed For Sleep

good-design-award_winner_rgb_blk_logo
  • 2021

  • Design Research

Designed By:

  • Nyein Chan Aung
  • Mark Armstrong
  • Arthur De Bono
  • Robbie Napper
  • Monash Design Health Collab

Commissioned By:

TEAGUE

Designed In:

Australia

Repose is an aircraft cabin that improves the inflight sleep of economy passengers through cabin design instead of seat design. Its central feature is a lateral sleep interface that turns the most dreaded seats in the economy cabin into the most desirable seats without affecting the cabin passenger capacity.


view website

  • CHALLENGE
  • SOLUTION
  • IMPACT
  • MORE
  • Sleep on an aircraft is a privilege for a few instead of a basic need that is met for all. Current solutions for better inflight sleep require passengers to purchase tickets in flying classes that are outside the financial reach of most travellers. Just one night of sleeplessness can have significant health impacts. Sleep deprivation from air travel can lead to reduced alertness, mood alterations, diminished memory processing, reduced executive function, and temporary impairments in cognition and physiology. This can be detrimental to passengers when they take on driving, critical decision making or skilled tasks upon arrival.

  • Repose was scientifically informed and holistically considerate of passengers, aircraft manufacturers, airlines and regulatory authorities. Rapid iterations of prototypes in collaboration with industry and scientific partners led to a grounded, straightforward and effective solution that is composed of; . The Lateral sleep interfaces which provide side support to passengers sleeping in window and mid-cabin seats; . Sleep onset cabin lighting that provides visibility but does not disturb sleep hormones; . Personalised temperature regulation vents above each passenger; . A combined system of passive and active noise control technologies; and . A cabin design aesthetic language that is tuned for better sleep.

  • Health and Economic Impacts: Repose improves passenger sleep health as one night of sleeplessness can cause reduced attention and alertness, mood alterations, diminished memory processing, reduced executive function, and impairments in cognition and physiology. This can be detrimental to passengers when they take on activities such as driving, skilled tasks or critical decision making upon arrival. Environmental Impacts: Current flying technology have major environmental Impacts. Therefore the Repose cabin is designed to enhance cabin efficiency while enhancing passenger comfort and dignity. Business Impacts: Better sleep in economy class can be a major strategic advantage for the aviation industry.

  • The only seating preferences in economy are "window" or "aisle". Passengers elsewhere are there for reasons outside of proxemic comfort. The most dreaded is the mid-cabin seats. The most favoured (for sleep) are the window seats - due to the ability to lean on the wall. With the Repose lateral sleep interfaces, all window seats become better sleeping seats and the dreaded mid-cabin seats are elevated to become as desirable as the window seats. These advantages, combined with the lighting, temperature and noise control designs effectively improve the economy passenger sleep comfort without changing the cabin capacity and efficiency.