A collaboration led by Molon Labe Seating, has unveiled a prototype of a new airline seat that will allow Passengers of Restricted Mobility (PRMs) to fly on airlines in their own wheelchairs.
Based on Molon Labe’s Side-Slip Seat design, the prototype is modified from a standard economy-class triple seat to a very wide economy-class double seat.
During normal operations it is a normal economy-class seat, but when required, the aisle seat is slid over the top of the window seat and locked into place for normal use. The space opened by sliding the aisle seat over the top of the window seat offers 36” wide space to secure a manual or powered wheelchair in place. A Q-Straint wheelchair docking system; already widely used on buses and trains, is used to secure the wheelchair to the aircraft cabin floor.
One advantage of this design is that airlines do not lose any revenue or real estate, which has been an issue with previous designs attempting to address this problem.
Molon Labe has launched a GoFundMe campaign to expedite the design, engineering, analysis and certification of this seat.
“It costs millions to design and certify an airline seat. We are a small start-up with limited resources and our recently certified S1 economy-class seat is our main focus right now. So, we chose to crowdfund this project so we can get it certified and in the air as soon as possible. We want to be flying within 18 months but we need the public’s help,” said Hank Scott, CEO, Molon Labe Seating.
The GoFundMe campaign is here: gofundme.com/f/flyingwheelchairs
Follow here – #flyingwheelchairs
Molon has partnered with several accessibility & aircraft-interiors partners to expedite the project.
Primus Aerospace: Manufacturing.
National Institute of Aviation Research: Analysis & Testing.
JPA Designs: Conceptual Design
Q’Straint: Wheelchair Docking System.
Quantum Rehab: Wheelchair Manufacturer.
Allwheelsup.org: Accessibility Advocates US
Flyingdisabled.org: Accessibility Advocates UK/EU