SIA to upcycle old aircraft parts

The retired commercial aircraft parts will be repurposed into unique retail products.

Singapore Airlines (SIA) launched The Upcycling Project, an initiative to repurpose and upcycle retired commercial aircraft parts and materials by creating unique retail products and art pieces which will be up for sale.

The launch dates and more information will be announced by SIA once the products are ready.

The Upcycling Project will benefit educational institutions, artists, and persons with disabilities.

Two consultants—Supermama Founder Edwin Low and Abry CEO Adriana Lim Escaño—will work in sourcing local and global retail brands which are eager to repurpose aircraft parts and materials into products such as bags, furniture, fashion apparel, accessories, and service ware.

Low expressed his excitement as a local designer and retailer, saying: "I believe we have some of the most creative minds and talents in Singapore, and I cannot wait to work with Singapore Airlines and the local brands to see what magic can be made from different aircraft parts and materials."

On the other hand, Escaño looks forward to seeing the collaboration between brands and designers. “The retail industry is very competitive, particularly with everyone trying to survive amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. This collaboration turns that ‘you versus me’ mentality into ‘we’, by gathering global brands and local designers to work together and breathe new life into aircraft parts.”

According to SIA, they saw a lot of interest when the company first broached the concept. “Our customers and fans will also have a rare opportunity to own exceptional art pieces, as well as the exclusive items that our retail partners will create,” SIA Senior Vice President for Customer Experience Yeoh Phee Teik said.

The first initiative of the project is a competition, organised by SIA and Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD), amongst tertiary and pre-tertiary students in Singapore. Along with this, aircraft parts and materials will also be donated to several educational institutions, which they can use as learning materials for art or design courses.

SUTD’s president, Professor Chong Tow Chong, said, “Through the upcycling design competition, we hope to inspire the next generation of designers and innovators to create novel products from exclusive materials and spread the idea of upcycling amongst the community."

Chong noted that SUTD has devoted an entire term studio led by the Architecture and Sustainable Design faculty to creating new products from upcycled aircraft parts, in line with SUTD’s vision to create a better world by design.

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