VOORTHUIZEN, THE NETHERLANDS — To limit the far-reaching consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic for the aviation industry, the Dutch company Aviation Glass — one of the world’s leading players in the field of aviation innovation — has developed specialized glass screens that can be fitted onto the existing commercial aircrafts so passengers and crew can fly safely.
The post-Covid-19 world demands a new way of thinking and innovative solutions for a society in which social distancing has become the standard. Many sectors will require specialized solutions, including the airline industry. With its product AeroGlass, the Dutch company Aviation Glass has developed a special tempered and laminated glass that can be used for screens, fitted between seats, that meet the stringent requirements imposed in the aviation industry as well as pass the safety regulations of the European Aviation Safety Agency (EASA).
Flying without jeopardizing passenger health
Jaap Wiersema, Managing Director of Aviation Glass: “When the Covid-19 pandemic swept across the world in March this year, we had already been discussing the application possibilities, including aircraft windows, of our product AeroGlass with several airlines and aerospace OEMs. When the consequences of the corona crisis for the airline industry became clear, various parties in the industry asked us to help them come up with ideas that would allow them to fly without jeopardizing the health of passengers and crew.
The obvious solutions have drawbacks. First of all, if half of all the seats are left unoccupied the price of a plane ticket will skyrocket. For many airlines this could means bankruptcy. Furthermore, the polycarbonate screens that are currently used in public transport and stores, for instance, are vulnerable, relatively heavy, and flammable. Wiersema: “Each and every component in an aircraft must meet strict safety requirements and must be certified by EASA and other aviation authorities. The AeroGlassShield we developed is light in weight, scratch-resistant and fireproof and it meets all requirements for aviation use. It is lighter in weight than plexiglass and due to its scratch resistance it is no dirt trap and much easier to clean. The AeroGlassShield can be fitted between the seats as a glass screen. This will significantly reduce the risk of infection for passengers and crew. Thus, flying in large groups in a post-Covid world will once again be possible.
Approval in the short term
According to Wiersema, the solution by Aviation Glass got an enthusiastic response from airline companies. “Currently, we are in the process of getting this application of AeroGlass approved. We are very positive that it will pass in the short term, as we have been supplying mirrors, room dividers and ceiling lighting system concepts for private jets and commercial aircrafts for years now. We hope to equip the first aircrafts with the AeroGlassShields between seats this year and thus contribute to a recovery of civilian aviation.”