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Photo: Recaro Aircraft Seating

Self-cleaning airline seat kills all bacteria

Airline seating manufacturer Recaro predicts a future of germ-free travel with its new innovation.

Air travel as a bacteria-free experience may seem like an impossible idea, but one airline seating manufacturer claims it is making a seat that kills all germs that come into contact with it.

Recaro Aircraft Seating GmbH is infusing the seat with a disinfectant that destroys germs within seconds. The innovation could debut on aircraft within the next two years.

There are plentiful studies and reports that reveal how that many surfaces inside an aircraft are full of bacteria and viruses.

One square inch of a seat-belt buckle can be home to 1,100 viable bacteria and fungal cells, one recent study found.

Recaro, which already sells expensive business-class seats for €80,000, is working to include an anti-bacterial coating into the seating fabric.

“Hotel room in the sky”
Besides cleaning itself, the business-class version of the seat will also be a digitalised and customised living area with features like a built-in massager and its own drinks bar, according to Recaro chief executive Mark Hiller, who calls it “a hotel room in the sky”.

Because cabin design has not changed a great deal for years, seating has become a key area for airlines to differentiate themselves, Hiller says, adding: “Individualisation is really the key.”

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