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Airbus Operation wins Deutsche Luftfahrt's innovation prize

Prize is presented in Industry 4.0, start-up, customer journey and emissions reduction categories

The Hamburg-based Airbus Operation won Tuesday (31 May) the first Innovationspreis der Deutschen Luftfahrt 2016 (IDL) in the Industry 4.0 category with the electronical Cabin Intercommunication Data System (eCIDS). The system allows crews to manage operations in the cabin using a smartphone, smart watch or smart glass. The prize was presented for the first time at the Berlin-Brandenburg (BER) Airport during a ceremony attended by over 100 invited guests including high-ranking aviation representatives.

Constant innovation is driving force

An expert jury headed by Prof. Rolf Henke, Director of the German Aerospace Center (DLR), selected the winners in four categories. The other winners include the German subsidiary of France’s Winfly in the start-up category, e.Wing.com flight booking software in the customer journey category and Deutche Lufthansa AG in the emissions reduction category.

Brigitte Zypries, the German government’s co-ordinator for the German Aerospace Sector and Parliamentary State Secretary in the Federal Ministry of Economics and Energy, said: “The concepts are convincing mainly because they are not only innovative and useful, but can also be implemented very quickly. Constant innovation is a driving force behind success in aviation, she added. And that is a focal point of IDL.

Novelty and credibility among criteria

The electronical Cabin Intercommunication Data System (eCIDS) by Airbus allows the crew to manage the cabin using a smartphone, smart watch and smart glass. So far, several functions of the system such as air-conditioning, lighting or monitoring the cistern or smoke alarm have been integrated without interfaces. Thus, the Airbus operation could open up new fields of business.

The assessment and choice of winners occurred as part of a multi-step procedure. First, members of the jury assessed the submitted documents according to a standard evaluation matrix with criteria such as novelty, substantiation, usefulness, market relevance, organisation, feasibility and introductory effort. This resulted in a ranking, which the jury evaluated in detail. The finalists and winners were decided in a vote.

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