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Flying gets smarter – LYRA communication system in the Lufthansa FlyingLab

Prototype testing in the Lufthansa FlyingLab | LYRA Connect is one of three selected innovations | Better communication between cabin crew and passengers

© Telekom Fashion Fusion & Lufthansa FlyingLab
LYRA combines different mobile devices to a new communication system.

The future of flying begins now: The finalists of the “Telekom Fashion Fusion & Lufthansa FlyingLab” fashion and technology competition at Fab Lab Berlin spent several months working on intelligent solutions for tomorrow's flying experience. Three prototypes have now been presented and tested on board of a Lufthansa Airbus A380 on its way from Frankfurt to Houston. The team of young developers presented ideas for new aircraft seats, in-flight entertainment and new ways of communication onboard. The platform for the presentation on flight LH440 was the so-called Lufthansa FlyingLab, which gave passengers the opportunity to try out innovative products and services 10,000 meters above the ground and learn more about smart fashion in lectures.

Team Lyra: A better eye on the passenger thanks to Smart Glasses

With “LYRA”, DFKI scientists Orkhan Amiraslanov and Bo Zhou from the Embedded Intelligence research department presented an application for improving communication between passengers and the cabin crew.

“LYRA Connect”, a web application developed jointly with the LMU Munich, the University of Duisburg-Essen and Xnet Communications from Hamburg, shortens the travel distances of cabin staff and thus optimises service processes and individual service on board. Passengers can use their own mobile devices to send simple requests to flight personnel. For example, passengers can order a drink or ask whether the connecting flight will still be reached. The next available flight attendant can see the request through Smart Glasses and knows immediately who ordered or asked something at what time. The flight attendants can also request additional information about the passengers. To do this, they step onto a signal field, a “location beacon”, which is placed in front of each seat. LYRA then discreetly transfers the corresponding information to the Smart Glasses for the flight attendant. For example, they can find out in advance what language the passenger speaks or what food preferences they have.

The jury's conclusion: “LYRA connects different devices. The devices are used to set up a kind of ‘mini Internet’ that is completely functional even offline in an aircraft. The system is ‘Plug & Play‘, i.e. it can be easily used in an aircraft. The team's challenge was to control the complexity by using different devices that participate in the app, so that an intuitive interface for the flight attendants and the passengers was created at the end. If the connected hardware solutions are convincing, the system can be used.”

Prof. Dr. Paul Lukowicz, Head of the Embedded Intelligence Research Department at DFKI in Kaiserslautern: “After winning the Fashion Fusion Award for the Trainwear concept last year, LYRA's entry into the finals of this year's competition and the sensational demonstration of the system in the Lufthansa FlyingLab once again underscore the relevance of modern wearable concepts as we are researching them in the DFKI Wearable AI Competence Center.” Prof. Lukowicz himself was on board the Lufthansa Flying Lab and, as one of five renowned digital experts, gave passengers insights into the topic “Fashion & Technology” in an interactive in-flight conference.

Cooperation with finalists extended

Telekom, the initiator of Fashion Fusion, is convinced that the industry focus they placed on the future of flying together with its partner Lufthansa in this year's Challenge was successful. “The Fashion Fusion Challenge shows how digitization can also positively change our travel experience on board of an aircraft and increase the feel-good factor”, says Antje Hundhausen, Vice President 3D Brand Experience at Deutsche Telekom.

Following the Lufthansa FlyingLab, the prototypes were presented to an international audience at the CES (Consumer Electronics Show) in Las Vegas. The initiators of the exclusive Challenge are also in further collaboration talks with the teams, including LYRA. The application will also be presented at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.


Prof. Dr. Paul Lukowicz
Research Department Embedded Intelligence
Competence Center Wearable AI
German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence
Trippstadter Straße 122
67663 Kaiserslautern, Germany
Phone: +49 631 205 75 4000

© Telekom Fashion Fusion & Lufthansa FlyingLab
In the Lufthansa FlyingLab, passengers were able to try out the innovative products and services.
© Telekom Fashion Fusion & Lufthansa FlyingLab
With LYRA, flight attendants can see the guests' enquiries directly in front of their eyes via Smart Glasses.