March 3, 2017 – In readiness for the launch of its PF3000 economy model, Pitch Aircraft Seating has set up a new manufacturing facility in the UK to support high-volume production of the seat. The facility, commissioned in 2016 and due to be fully operational in the second quarter of 2017, features an optimized production layout with a focus on lean manufacturing techniques.
Pitch clearly has confidence in the future success of the PF3000, but head of its official unveiling at Aircraft Interiors Expo in Hamburg on April 4-6, what do we know about it? Gary Doy, director of Pitch, has stated that the fixed-recline seat has been developed in-house to build upon the attributes of the existing PF2000 model, with increased passenger space and functionality, and a design optimized for both the Boeing 737NG and the Airbus A320 family.
Ahead of the launch, Pitch has also indicated that the seat will feature a highly sculpted seatback with a low-profile bungee storage system and an optimized table shape, intended to come together to provide ‘excellent legroom, even at the tightest pitch’. The PF3000 will also have an ‘innovative’ upper literature pocket, which will apparently give airlines a unique opportunity to present full-size literature in a tidy way that will also allow them to incorporate these materials into their cabin branding work.
Doy has also stated that a USB power option will be available, located behind the tray table in order to discourage use during taxi, takeoff and landing. There will also be provision to place electronic tablets at a convenient viewing angle behind the table, and to store them in front of the literature pocket when not in use.
Below: Pitch’s PF2000 seat, launched in 2012, is flying with Monarch Airlines
Pitch has mainly contracted UK-based suppliers for the seat components, with the company working closely with these partners to understand their capabilities and manufacturing processes. As Doy explained, “Design at all levels plays a key role in the overall quality and success of the product. You have to invest time and work closely with your supply partners to enjoy the benefits of efficient manufacturing.”
The PF3000 seat is scheduled for production and full certification in Q2 this year, and according to Pitch has successfully passed a number of indicative tests including ‘a very comfortable pass’ in the 16G HIC dynamic test.