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All Wheels Up advocacy group helps design wheelchair access for Pangea hybrid electric airliner

“As a new clean sheet design airplane, we have a chance to address the lack of access on airplanes. We have to stop saying wheelchairs do not fit in airplanes”, said Mario Asselin, co-CEO The AirCraft Company, at a recent Global Forum on Wheelchair Access Air Travel.

The first model of the Pangea® family will be the 30-seater SY30J. The company’s founders want to bring the American Disability Act (ADA) compliance to aviation and this will be a key driver in the aircraft’s design. T0 help with this task, the team plans to build an engineering mockup of the Pangea from the front galley to the aft lavatory. This full-size mockup will be assessed and tested by the disability community through the All Wheels Up advocacy committee as well as the AWU Global Forum to evaluate all aspects of the cabin layout. NIAR is also collaborating with All Wheels Up on testing current market wheelchair tie down systems.

According to the company:

“Designing an interior and seats for regional fleets that prioritize accessibility, comfort, safety, and space efficiency requires a holistic approach. The team plans to address the following challenges:

  • Design an interior that is 100% recyclable, an essential step in sustainable flying over the entire life
  • cycle of an airplane.
  • Design seats for regional fleets that prioritize accessibility, comfort, safety, and space e􀆯
  • Design convertible seats to allow wheelchair tie-downs to secure RESNA approved WC-19
  • Design innovative storage solutions such as overhead bins that optimize storage space and are easily
  • accessible for passengers and under-seat storage options for personal items that provide more
  • Design a wheelchair accessible lavatory, a first for a regional airliner.
  • Design accessibility features such as flight attendant call button, air vent and reading light switch.”

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