Collins Aerospace offers solution for wheelchair passengers

Travelers to board and remain in their wheelchairs during flight

Collins Aerospace wheelchair mobility
The Collins Aerospace wheelchair seating solution provides a more comfortable and dignified flying experience without impacting existing aircraft cabin densities. CREDIT COLLINS AEROSPACE

Collins Aerospace will unveil its cabin solution for onboard wheelchair accommodation this week at the annual Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg, Germany.

The Collins product is compatible with most WC19 and ISO 7176-19 transport-certified powered wheelchair devices, allowing passengers with reduced mobility an inflight experience more equivalent to that of able-bodied passengers.

Implementation involves installation of a restraint system at the front of a narrow body aircraft to accommodate a wheelchair user. Restraining the wheelchair in place is simple and can easily be carried out by on-board crews without requiring assistance from maintenance staff.

“Enabling motorized wheelchair users to remain in their chair is imperative to providing a more equitable and dignified air travel experience to the millions of people who rely on personal mobility devices in their everyday lives,” said Cynthia Muklevicz, vice president of customer and business development for Collins Aerospace, in a release. “Innovating solutions that enhance the inflight and cabin experience is fundamental to the mission of Collins. We’re confident this certifiable solution1 will help eliminate barriers, opening greater possibilities to a wider population to more conveniently experience the excitement and necessity of air travel.”

Boarding and deplaning are also simplified, not only reducing the risk of personal injury and discomfort associated with transporting individuals in and out of their wheelchairs, but also greatly reducing instances of mishandled wheelchairs during the check-in, handling and stowage processes.

In recent tests at the National Institute of Aviation Research (NIAR) the boarding process with the Collins solution was shown to be akin to the average ground transportation experience – harmonizing the air travel experience with the typical accommodations found in other modes of transportation.

Installation of the Collins solution involves an integrated restraint system and seat belt attachments securing both wheelchair and passenger. The restraint system is stowed when not in use. The Collins solution utilizes unused space and does not require seat removal or modification, maintaining a consistent experience for all passengers and allowing airlines to operate with existing passenger densities.

Collins’ integrated seating solution is being demonstrated during the Aircraft Interiors Exhibition May 28-30.

Collins Aerospace, with about 7,000 employees in Cedar Rapids, is a leader in integrated and intelligent solutions for the global aerospace and defense industry. The company, an RTX subsidiary, is dedicated to delivering future-focused technologies to advance sustainable and connected aviation, passenger safety and comfort, mission success, space exploration, and more.

RTX, with its global headquarters in Arlington, Virginia, has more than 185,000 employees globally through three subsidiaries – Collins Aerospace, Pratt & Whitney, and Raytheon.