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Aircraft seating comfort: the influence of seat pitch on passengers’ well-being


One of the most important factors influencing aircraft seating comfort in economy class, is legroom. In an airline interior mock up, with the ability to adjust the seat pitch in a range of 28 inches to 43 inches, a study to investigate the influence of seat pitch on passengers’ well-being was conducted. In a pre-study, aspects of subjective postural sensations and spatial perception were identified, and a questionnaire was developed. In the main study, 30 subjects rated at different seat pitch settings the spatial perception and the ability of adopting and changing sitting postures. As a result a functional relationship between overall well-being, the subjects’ anthropometry and seat pitch was developed. Furthermore it was identified, that there is a maximum overall well-being at a seat pitch of 34 inches to 40 inches, depending on the passengers’ anthropometry. A further enlargement of seat pitch, led to a reduction of well-being.