Cabin Humidity Emerges as Service Differentiator for High-yield Passengers
No one likes to endure the sticky feeling of excess humidity, but lack of humidity in aircraft cabins at altitude can be a major cause of discomfort and travel fatigue. The Cair humidification system from Sweden’s CTT Systems has been growing in popularity in the VIP private aircraft market but it recently made a mainstream breakthrough when Lufthansa selected the equipment for the first-class cabins of its new A380 airliners, which have just entered service. Lufthansa is widely regarded as a leader in technical innovation and so its efforts to create comfortable humidity levels for its premium rate passengers could prove influential in this critical market segment for yield-impoverished airlines.
Without artificial humidification, first-class passengers are actually worse off than their poor relations in coach because their part of the aircraft has fewer people to generate natural humidity. Cair keeps relative humidity at a comfortable 20 to 25 percent and CTT can also provide the system for crew rest areas.
Separately, CTT provides its Zonal Drying system to deal with the flip side of the issue–excessive water accumulation in the aircraft. Lufthansa’s A380s also feature this system, which removes excessive moisture from areas such as between the cabin walls and the airframe, where it causes corrosion and other damage, and results in additional weight and higher fuel burn. Both Cair and Zonal Drying are optional equipment for the new A350XWB widebody. Boeing has selected Zonal Drying as standard equipment for its new 787 Dreamliner, with Cair as an option for the flight deck and the crew rest area.