Designs for Lufthansa

Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology

ISSN: 0002-2667

Article publication date: 1 August 2004




(2004), "Designs for Lufthansa", Aircraft Engineering and Aerospace Technology, Vol. 76 No. 4.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2004, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Designs for Lufthansa

Designs for Lufthansa

Keywords: Lufthansa, Aircraft, Design

Priestman Goode, the London-based product, environment and transport design specialist, displayed a range of aircraft designs for Lufthansa at the recent Aircraft Interiors Exhibition Expo in Hamburg, Germany. Designs for the interior of the German flag carrier's new Intercontinental fleet the Airbus A340-600 were exhibited, these included the Business Class seat, the galley and new concept work by Priestman Goode.

The extensive design programme for Lufthansa, created over 3 years, was developed by Priestman Goode as a response to the total passenger experience, creating a holistic philosophy rather than a series of finite objects. The key elements of the project are seating for business and economy class, galley, stairhouse and lower floor public areas plus in-flight entertainment interface, passenger control unit and cabin accessories.

The Business Class seat has been key to defining a contemporary Lufthansa brand identity within the cabin. It sets a design aesthetic that combines strength and reliability with soft, enclosing personal spaces. The 2 m inclined “bed” within a carbon fibre shell incorporates revolutionary comfort features including unsurpassed seat adjustability, retractable armrests and the pneumatically controlled “comfort system”. This automatically changes the backrest shape depending on seat position as well as offering lumbar and massage functions.

The kinematic mechanism was jointly developed by the design team, Recaro and TU Munich. The seat translates from dining position to a full flat bed, with each area of the seat individually adjustable both in dimension and position via the integrated “master controller”.

The aesthetic language created by the “swoosh” design of the Business Class seat is reiterated throughout the interior, particularly in the stairhouse in the Economy Class cabin. The use of the lower deck area for passenger facilities on the A340-600 is said to be unique, and significantly opens up the main deck. To access this “Lower lobe”

Priestman Goode created an open-sided stairhouse with a dramatic swooping ceiling canopy, incorporating lighting, signage and storage. The “Lower Lobe” houses passenger lavatories, crew rest, water dispenser and galleys.

The galleys, manufactured by Sell GmbH, have been conceived as an introduction to the cabin, offering a welcoming entrance to the passenger rather than entering via the kitchen. The use of a new material developed as a durable rollerblind to cover the upper galley areas, makes flexible use of the galley and offers a key branding opportunity, enhancing the boarding experience.

Within the strong existing identity and corporate colour scheme of Lufthansa, Priestman Goode has been able to reinvigorate the interior of the Airbus A340-600 using lighting, newly developed material finishes and accessories. The trademark corrugation, an integral part of the Lufthansa brand, has been retained, but is used subtly as an accent with a more refined surface.

The familiar flying crane logo is highlighted by its significant positioning on key elements of the interior and signage. Bespoke foils applied to partitions demarcate cabin classes and are combined with carpets, curtains and seat-fabrics to create a controlled blend of neutrals and brand colours.

From a design point of view, this has not been one project, but a dozen running in parallel, each with its own challenge. Highly regarded by client and consumer, Priestman Goode's work for Lufthansa focuses on passenger experience and is an excellent example of three dimensional design conveying brand identity/ends.

The on-board entertainment system combines both the seat and in-flight entertainment control interfaces on one unique handset. The graphic user interface, designed by Priestman Goode and Encompass, extends the Lufthansa brand with easy to use interactive media including video and audio on demand, games and an onboard Web browser. The friendly, approachable appearance of the handset counters the complex functionality of the interface, whilst the cursor based navigation system ensures that the passenger is never more than three clicks away from their final selection.

Core transport clients include Lufthansa, Airbus, Virgin Trains, Virgin Atlantic, Malaysia Airlines and B/E Aerospace.

Details available from: Priestman Goode. Web site:

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