SEVERE WX : Red Flag Warning View Alerts

No one wants the middle seat on airplanes. This design could change that

Colorado-based startup Molon Labe Seating is developing a staggered seating design for commercial airlines which they claim provides passengers with more room and larger seats.

Posted: Jul 19, 2019 5:59 AM


It is a truth universally acknowledged that middle seats on airplanes are the worst.

Being awkwardly sandwiched in between two people while fighting for elbow room is the bane of most passengers. Now a new design might actually make people want the middle seat -- or at least make the flying experience less miserable.

The S1 design from the Colorado-based startup, Molon Labe Seating, features three economy seats in a staggered layout, putting the middle seat slightly behind the aisle and window seats, and at a slightly lower height.

Sitting directly adjacent to two people means that passengers only have so much shoulder room. But moving the middle seat back a few inches allows for more space, so the company made the middle seat about three to five inches wider than the standard 18 inch seat.

"That little bit of stagger means that every single person gets to spread out a little more," Hank Scott, the founder and CEO of Molon Labe Seating, told CNN.

Passengers won't have to fight over elbow space either. The armrests are also built so that they are not a uniform height from front to back. They will allow the aisle and window passengers to rest their elbows on the front of the armrest while leaving space at the back, which is lower, for the middle passenger.

"No seats are any smaller, one seat ends up being wider, and we've solved the elbow wars," Scott said.

The seats are intended for shorter, domestic flights, though the company is developing a version for longer flights that include more padding and larger TV screens.

So when can passengers test out these seats for themselves?

The seats were certified by the Federal Aviation Administration last month, and are being manufactured by Primus Aerospace in Colorado. Scott said that he expected they would be available on two airlines by April or May of 2020. Though he could not disclose which airlines would feature the seats, he said one of them is based in North America.

It's not just passengers who will be happier with the new arrangement, Scott said. The seats are lighter than standard airline seats, which could help cut down on fuel costs.

"For an airline, it's kind of a no-brainer," he said.

The S1 seats won't fix everything about flying -- the seats don't recline or offer any more legroom. And that's not to mention the food, the chatty passengers, the inefficient boarding and de-boarding processes ... and the list goes on.

"It's still going to suck," Scott said. "Now it's going to suck less."

Oregon Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 193732

Reported Deaths: 2572
CountyCasesDeaths
Multnomah38352591
Washington25592233
Marion22026306
Clackamas17440214
Lane13007148
Jackson10862139
Deschutes896274
Umatilla820284
Linn492969
Yamhill446376
Klamath441164
Polk375752
Malheur351863
Josephine334570
Douglas327271
Benton310019
Jefferson219837
Coos206633
Columbia174427
Union144823
Lincoln137921
Wasco137728
Hood River118730
Crook111322
Morrow110716
Clatsop9858
Baker95414
Tillamook6493
Curry6469
Grant5095
Lake4517
Harney3448
Wallowa1845
Gilliam631
Sherman581
Wheeler321
Unassigned00

California Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 3764405

Reported Deaths: 62573
CountyCasesDeaths
Los Angeles123645624067
Riverside2994554594
San Bernardino2967824715
San Diego2785913729
Orange2709835026
Santa Clara1190642096
Kern1091771374
Sacramento1048401686
Fresno1018381688
Alameda879401657
Ventura810011013
San Joaquin732201391
Contra Costa68741805
Stanislaus621421061
Tulare49654839
Monterey43613383
San Mateo42038568
San Francisco36720544
Santa Barbara34337456
Solano32953252
Merced31898460
Sonoma30035320
Imperial28443726
Kings22989246
Placer22679292
San Luis Obispo21308260
Madera16462242
Santa Cruz16264207
Marin14056227
Yolo13910210
Shasta12152226
Butte12026199
El Dorado10168112
Napa987082
Sutter9433112
Yuba626847
San Benito606563
Lassen570624
Tehama557262
Nevada474275
Tuolumne413166
Mendocino410149
Humboldt404641
Amador365847
Lake347643
Glenn239125
Colusa223416
Siskiyou223424
Calaveras212954
Inyo142838
Del Norte13938
Mono12844
Plumas7106
Modoc4994
Mariposa4487
Trinity4005
Sierra1120
Alpine880
Unassigned520
Medford
Clear
78° wxIcon
Hi: 77° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 78°
Brookings
Partly Cloudy
53° wxIcon
Hi: 72° Lo: 52°
Feels Like: 53°
Crater Lake
Partly Cloudy
78° wxIcon
Hi: 59° Lo: 35°
Feels Like: 78°
Grants Pass
Partly Cloudy
78° wxIcon
Hi: 79° Lo: 56°
Feels Like: 78°
Klamath Falls
Partly Cloudy
72° wxIcon
Hi: 71° Lo: 46°
Feels Like: 72°
Thunderstorm threat, critical fire danger this afternoon
KDRV Radar
KDRV Fire Danger
KDRV Weather Cam

Community Events

Latest Video

Image

Friday, May 14 morning weather

Image

Day two of manslaughter trial in fatal Medford road rage case

Image

Special bond fuels Abramson and Armantrout's CCC title run

Image

Thursday, May 13th Evening Weather

Image

HealthWatch: Signs and symptoms of a stroke

Image

HealthWatch: The importance of donating blood

Image

Pet of the Week: Cohen and Whiskers

Image

Thursday, May 13 morning weather

Image

Take a Hike: Panorama Point

Image

Take a Hike: Twilight Trail