2018 Winners & Shortlists


Type of EntryProduct Design
CategoryConsumer Products
Idea Creation ROCKWELL COLLINS Winston-Salem, USA

The Campaign

One of the first set of challenges when designing an airline seat is determining the density, or how many seats will be able to fit into a cabin section. The goal is to increase the amount of seats all the while maintaining a generous bed length and width, dining table size, monitor size, console, maximum privacy, etc. One of the first ways we achieved this is actually invisible to the eye until they are explained – such as the 3 degree seat angling and the nesting of the airline customer. The 3 degree angle is about aligning the passengers feet with the ottoman space situated between the passengers in front. It is enough without increasing the total seat width to a point that the seats will not fit into the cabin as in a 7 abreast solution (2-3-2). It’s a fine balance between total seat

Creative Execution

Emirates Airlines have a particular design language that sets them apart from their closer Middle Eastern competitors. Their approach is more classic and cultured, so they choose to utilize materials that reflect the UAE elegance and luxury through the ages, such as, rare woods, polished metals, and exquisite leathers. This was in perfect alignment with our intent to bring the luxuries of a more refined modern day sports car into the business class cabin. We executed our design with a refresh at the woodgrain, utilizing darker richer tones, surrounded by chrome accents, and included plush diamond stitched leather seats. We wanted the passenger to have the widest longest fully flat bed, with greater accessibility to media components at every position. Extra privacy was achieved with taller consoles and electrically controlled privacy screens. Without compromise in seat geometry or aesthetics, we packaged the largest entertainment screen flying commercially today.

Indication of how successful the outcome was in the market

The results now are that the Emirates 777 business class has a more are up to date aesthetic , yet still maintains the traditional elegance that sets them apart from any other airline. The revamped interior has been receiving great accolades in the industry and in the media. The seat is not only comfortable and luxurious it has features such as its bed length and screen size still not found on other products.

After the overall layout of the seat design is determined, the geometry of each seat pax and it’s surrounding components are strategized in order to comply with the airline’s request of seat specifications. We knew there was a traditional aesthetic that we had to abide by, which included a rich wood grain, reflective gold elements, and luxurious leather. There were seating components and details that we needed to include, such as, bigger monitor screens, increased privacy, ample storage areas, fully flat horizontal bed, seat and TV controls all in one central place, easy access to data ports, and a very large single piece food tray. All of these components combined with the elegance of a modern day sports car and we’d have our final product in the Emirates 777 Falcon seat.


Name Company Position
Michael Princip Rockwell Collins Senior Industrial Design Engineer
Tracy Pence Rockwell Collins R&D Staff Engineer
Glenn Johnson Rockwell Collins Design Director
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