Why innovative cabin lighting is increasingly important for both airlines and passengers


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STG Aerospace cabin lighting solutions
STG Aerospace’s Marcus Williams explained that retrofitting ambient cabin lighting solutions can help to close the gap between older aircraft and next-generation aircraft, many of which have programmable LED lighting installed as standard. (Photo: STG Aerospace Limited)

Following Thomson Airways’ award of a contract to STG Aerospace to retrofit 23 of its aircraft with a plug-and-play programmable blue/white LED cabin lighting system, FTE caught up with STG’s Marcus Williams, Director of Sales & Marketing, to find out what difference lighting solutions can make.

Speaking to FTE in the exhibition hall at FTE Europe 2015 in London, Williams explained that the installation of liTeMood® helps to positively impact the onboard experience for passengers, who now see cabin ambience as one of the most important elements of their overall experience.

“Lighting is now a very important consideration from a passenger’s point of view. In fact, it was interesting to see in the Airbus presentation in the ‘Up in the Air’ conference that lighting is now the number two consideration for passengers,” he said. “They really notice it because it’s really atmospheric and can make a big difference to the cabin environment.”

The deal with Thomson, which covers nine Boeing 737s and 14 757s, follows on from similar deals with the likes of Arkefly, which was the launch customer for liTeMood. As Williams pointed out to FTE, the solution will also soon be available for the 767 and A320.

A new generation of opportunities

With the next-generation of aircraft now being rolled off the line with ambient cabin lighting solutions installed as standard, FTE couldn’t help but question whether the retrofit lighting market could be limited. Williams, however, sees the new generation of aircraft as an opportunity, rather than a threat to long-term business.

“A lot of airlines are putting older aircraft on routes that their competitors are operating new aircraft, so they need to make upgrades,” he said. “Once you’ve flown on one of the next-generation aircraft, you come to expect that level of comfort, so the more new aircraft that come in, the more the older ones need to be retrofitted to create consistency across the fleet.”

Understandably eager to promote the benefits of liTeMood® to as many airlines as possible, Williams explained that his outlook is positive, especially after a successful few days at FTE Europe. “We’ve seen a number of airlines here, including Thomson Airways, in fact, and we’ve had good meetings with them and the feedback has been great. Most airlines realise that this is something that passengers really value.”