Global design manufacturer Herman Miller, Inc. (NASDAQ:MLHR) today unveiled a new Aeron chair. The Aeron chair first launched in 1994 and was unlike any chair the world had ever seen. Instead of a padded throne, designers Bill Stumpf and Don Chadwick did away with foam and fabric to create a true machine for sitting. Uniting human-centred design with Herman Miller’s leadership in innovative technology and materials, Aeron quickly became the best-selling and most recognisable performance chair of all time—with over 7 million sold in 134 countries, the chair is a vital tool for users around the globe and holds a rightful place in popular culture.
Herman Miller’s new Aeron retains the distinctive silhouette of the iconic chair, but every component of the design has been updated to raise the bar for performance seating. With the input of original co-designer Don Chadwick, and a dedicated team of scientists, engineers, materials specialists, and researchers who worked on the project for over two years, Herman Miller has enhanced the chair by combining the latest insights in anthropometrics and ergonomics with two decades of advancement in materials, manufacturing, and technology. The resulting chair is recognisably an Aeron, but features stronger and smarter materials, better adjustment capabilities, intuitive controls, enhanced aeration, and a health-positive, more comfortable sit.
Aeron now offers a completely new experience of sitting—with a re-engineered tilt mechanism, adjustable PostureFit SLTM spinal support, and groundbreaking 8Z PellicleTM zoned suspension working in concert to deliver enhanced comfort. For individuals, the chair accommodates the widest possible range of activities and postures people adopt while sitting—from intense upright focus to relaxed contemplative recline. For organisations, cross-performance design makes Aeron suitable for a wide array of workplace settings. The new Aeron performs better than ever before—so that a new generation of users and organisations can too.
Staying in one position reduces the natural pumping action of the muscles that deliver nutrients to the intervertebral disks. The Aeron chair’s tilt allows it to move with the body in such a natural way that people can shift from forward to reclining postures intuitively. The new Aeron’s slimmer, updated tilt mechanism delivers an even more seamless experience of movement (and stasis) to the sitter through a smoother trajectory and optimal balance point. Aeron is designed to keep people in contact with the back of the chair and in control of their continuous movement throughout the entire range of recline.
While the classic Aeron supported numerous positions and postures, the frame angle of the new chair has been adjusted 1.8-degree forward to better support the body in the upright position and across a wider range of postures. Users will find the new Aeron moving with them seamlessly to offer proper ergonomic support across a larger variety of tasks.
Years after Aeron’s completion, Herman Miller continued to advance the science of sitting. With the goal of promoting natural, unforced, spinal alignment and muscle balance even when the sitter is not in a reclined posture, PostureFit in 2002 became a critical element of the Aeron chair’s health-positive design. The technology was developed to provide back support that comfortably sustains the pelvis in its natural forward tilt—the position the body holds while standing powerfully upright. It did so by adjusting to fill the void between the contours of the sacral-pelvic area and the backrest.
Today, by incorporating adjustable sacral and lumbar support, PostureFit SL brings the technology to a whole new level. It supports the sacral region to nurture the natural S-shape of the spine, rotate the pelvis forward, and activate healthful posture—all while sitting upright. A secondary pad provides comfort and support to the lumbar region of the spine. Together, they help strengthen the spine to produce what Herman Miller calls “power posture.” PostureFit SL puts the sitter in complete control of his or her posture with the new Aeron’s premier spinal support system.
New 8Z Pellicle offers unprecedented comfort through eight varied zones of tension in the seat and back. Designed around the human anatomy to better envelop the sitter, the tightest zones provide firm support where you need it, while more compliant zones conform to the sitting bones and distribute weight evenly. Woven with nine unique shades of weft yarn, 8Z Pellicle offers a richer tonality and works seamlessly with the new Aeron’s three material palettes.
Designed to embrace the human body and enhance comfort and performance, each of 8Z Pellicle’s zones serves a specific purpose. Four tight zones engage the sitter and are the first point of contact with the suspension material to reinforce a healthful seated posture. Two nesting zones provide a lower amount of tension to cradle the sit bones and scapulars and reduce pressure in those areas. Two zones of stabilisation accommodate the key muscle groups of the sitter at a healthy angle without letting the body sink into the chair. Together, the zones deliver the pre-emptive support the body needs to stay active throughout the day.
Aeron’s original design made it possible to adjust the amount of recline and resistance to the sitter’s liking. Depending on a person’s scale, this involved up to 50 turns of the tilt mechanism. The new chair offers updated user adjustments for intuitive, fine-tuning; advancements in engineering have allowed Herman Miller to scale back the amount of turning, twisting, and time spent customizing a personal fit. Now the sitter can reach a custom recline with minimal effort. Additionally, an updated arm mechanism allows not only for up and down adjustments, as with the original Aeron Chair, but a greater degree of personalisation through front to back, and side-to-side adjustments.
To meet the needs of the broadest possible set of body types, Aeron was designed in three proportional sizes. This approach to inclusiveness became an integral element of Aeron’s DNA. The new Aeron Chair is available in the same, anthropometric A-B-C sizing.
With the introduction of the new Aeron, Herman Miller reinforces the company’s worldwide leadership in workplace innovation and high performance seating. The new Aeron chair will be available for both commercial and residential users, in all markets where Herman Miller products are sold. The new chair is available to order now in North America, Latin America and Mexico, the Middle East, and Africa. It will be available in the United Kingdom and Europe in January 2017 and Asia in February 2017.