Home > Seat Cushions > E-A-R Specialty Composites


Overview
E-A-R Specialty Composites manufactures and markets proprietary elastomers for noise and vibration control, shock protection and ergonomics. They maintain headquarters and a production facility in Indianapolis and a plant in Newark Del., near Philadelphia.

CONFORŪ Foam
Our CONFORŪ foams offer a unique combination of seemingly conflicting properties that are ideal for comfort management and protective padding applications. These urethane foams soften and conform when exposed to warmth, giving gentle, virtually pressure-free support. When the foams take a direct blow, however, their high energy-absorption characteristics enable them to absorb up to 97 percent of an impact. While they are slow to recover after deflection, they effectively resist compression set. Because the open-celled foams are breathable, non-irritating in dermal contact, and help dissipate moisture and perspiration away from the body, they are ideal for medical and body contact cushioning applications.

New Report from the British Gliding Association - March, 2017

Why You Should Fly with an Energy-Absorbing Safety Cushion
Also available here: https://members.gliding.co.uk/library/safety/safety-foam/

New Report Praises CONFOR Foam from Aearo E-A-R Specialty Composites
The link below is to a report that concludes that CONFOR Foam outperformed other types of seat cushion in regard to long-term comfort. 

The text below is copied from the web site in the link below.

Introduction: Glider flights may require the pilot to sit for many hours in a cramped cockpit that allows little movement. Experiments were undertaken to evaluate the performance of different seat cushions in a glider simulator. Methods: Subjects were male glider pilots with a maximum height of 1.85 m (6.07 ft) who participated in simulated glider flights lasting 1.5 h. A pressure-mapping device was used to determine cushion performance. By analyzing 15 subjects we calculated the pressure threshold for comfort, above which fidgeting provided objective evidence of discomfort. To determine cushion performance relative to that threshold, 20 other pilots then sat on 5 different viscoelastic foam cushions in the simulator. Results: The time-averaged peak pressure below which no discomfort-induced fidgeting occurred was 8.8 kPa (1.28 psi). The highest peak pressure at which discomfort could be relieved by fidgeting was 11.0 kPa (1.6 psi). Of the five cushions tested, pressure remained below the discomfort threshold for almost all subjects for only one type of cushion. Discussion: The best-performing cushion had a layered structure made up of approximately 25 mm of Confor C47 (green) foam with an overlay of approximately 13 mm of Confor C45 (blue foam). The other types of energy-absorbing cushions tested, either with or without a softer top layer, are unlikely to provide comfortable seating solutions for most pilots. We conclude that satisfactory cushions are available for this application and that they can be objectively evaluated using this technique.

Note: Cumulus Soaring, Inc. had sold a cushion with 1 inch of green and 1/2 inch of blue for a while, but it was not very popular. Instead, I recommend 1 inch of green and 1 inch of blue in hot climates, and 1 inch of blue and 1 inch of pink in cool climates.

Report: Pressure Measurements and Comfort of Foam Safety Cushions for Confined Seating
Article in "Technical Soaring" in 2009: A Simple Comparison of the Characteristics of Energy-Absorbing Foams for Use in Safety Cushions in Glider Cockpit Environments

Note from Paul Remde: Personally I find the green C45 foam much to hard to use in most Northern parts of the world such as here in Minnesota - except on the hottest summer days.  However, it works great in warm/hot climates.

Great For Use In Gliders
CONFOR foam seat cushions are the best product available for use in gliders.  They offer 2 advantages over other seat cushion materials.

  • Safety
    Because of their shock-absorption properties, CONFOR foams are being employed in general aviation passenger seats as a way to meet new crash-load standards. The foams dissipate impact energy, instead of hitting bottom and returning the energy to the impacting body.  The extremely high energy-absorption characteristics of CONFOR foam help protect your back from bumps and hard landings.  Studies have shown that it dramatically reduces the likelihood of back injury - if used in adequate thicknesses.
  • Comfort
    Because they self-adjust and provide balanced, even support, CONFOR foams do not contribute to the fatigue and discomfort associated with traditional high-resilience seating foams in long-term seating applications, such as for military (and sailplane) pilots, wheelchair patients and mass transit passengers. CONFOR foam softens and conforms to the curves of your body as it is warmed by your body to that is offers support over a larger surface area than most other products - for hours of pressure-free support.  This enables enhanced comfort on long glider flights.

Product Specifications
CONFOR Foam Product Bulletin
- See the center column for the "AC" version specifications.

Ratings
Confor Foam “AC” material will meet the Aeronautical (Fire/Flame/Smoke specification) which is test method “FAR 25.853(a) Appendix F Part I (a)(1)(ii)(12 sec)”. 

Firmness Options
CONFOR Foam is available in several firmness options.  The softer versions are more comfortable, but they will "bottom-out" (compress to a point where they offer no padding) more quickly than the more firm versions.  Below is a summary of the available firmness options.

  • Yellow, CF-40AC, Very soft and extremely comfortable, but bottoms out easily.  Often used on top of layers of Blue and Pink to give extreme comfort.
  • Pink, CF-42AC, Medium-soft, popular, Often used on top of a layer of Blue to give great softness and energy absorbing capability.
  • Blue, CF-45AC, Medium-firm, Most Popular, Recommended by the manufacturer when only a single 1" layer of padding is used.  Often used below a layer of Pink to give great energy absorbing capability below the softer comfort of the Pink layer.
  • Green, CF-47AC, Firm, Used below a layer of Blue and Pink layers when there is room for 3 layers.  This version offers the best energy absorption in warmer climates. However, it is very, very hard (stiff) at room temperature.  I mean, this stuff is really hard.  Did I mention that it is really hard...  For that reason, I recommend the blue version for most applications. 

Important Notes About the Properties of CONFOR Foam
CONFOR Foam is an amazing material. Its energy-absorbing properties make it wonderful for use in seat cushions. However, it is also somewhat of a strange material. Below are some things you should know before you buy it.

  • CONFOR foam gets softer as it warms to your body temperature, but it also gets harder as it gets cold.  On very cold days is may become brittle and break.  If you compress it while it is hard, it may never fully rebound. You may want to take it out of your airplane if you keep it stored in cold climates.
  • It is easy to cut and form CONFOR Foam. You can cut it using a sharp knife or even a scissors. When it is cold and hard, you can shape it with sandpaper or cut it with an electric carving knife.
  • CONFOR Foam seems to "flow" such that it will gradually crack when stretched. For example, if you fold a long piece in half and leave it overnight, a crack will slowly form and eventually the piece will crack completely into 2 pieces. You wouldn't think it would do that. Therefore, we always ship it flat, or curved around a large radius. Likewise, if you sit on CONFOR Foam without it being inside a protective, somewhat non-stretchy fabric cover, as your butt cheeks spread as the fabric is compressed, the foam will stretch and eventually crack. That is why we always recommend the use of a somewhat "non-stretchy" fabric cover.
  • The cover also protects the foam from sunlight - to avoid degradation due to U.V. exposure.  It is very important to cover the foam. You will get a mess of small foam crumbs in your cockpit over time if you don't cover the foam with some sort of fabric material.

Gluing Tip
The CONFOR Foam can be glued together using 3M 74 FoamFast Spray Adhesive. It can be purchased from Amazon.com, OfficeDepot, Staples, and some craft stores.

Details from the 3M web site:

"For Bonding Flexible Urethane or Latex Foam Together or to Many Other Materials Like Wood, Metal, and Non-Vinyl Plastics.  It is used for bonding flexible urethane or latex foam together or to many other materials like wood, metal and plastics. THIS ADHESIVE IS NOT RECOMMENDED FOR BONDING VINYL PLASTICS. Its outstanding features include extra coverage, bonds immediately."


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Part # Description Photo
(Click on images below to view large versions)

Price

Lead-time
Single-Layer, Small Size
CONFOR-Foam-Yellow-1x16x18

CONFORŪ Foam Seat Cushion - Yellow - 1x16x18"

I have discontinued the sale of this product due to little interest and the requirement to purchase 50 at a time. However, I do have some of the large yellow pieces (CONFOR-Foam-Yellow-1x18x40) in stock. You can cut 2 of these out of the larger piece and have an 1" x 8" x 18" piece left-over.

This seat cushion material is an investment in your comfort and safety.  It dramatically increases cockpit comfort - especially on long flights.  A somewhat "non-stretchy" fabric cover is highly recommended.

Firmness: Yellow, CF-40AC, Very soft and extremely comfortable, but bottoms out easily.  Often used on top of layers of Blue and Pink to give extreme comfort.

Size: 1" x 16" x 18" (25 x 406 x 457 mm)

$35

No
Longer
Available

(see larger
size below)

 
CONFOR-Foam-Pink-1x16x18 CONFORŪ Foam Seat Cushion - Pink - 1x16x18"
This seat cushion material is an investment in your comfort and safety.  It dramatically increases cockpit comfort - especially on long flights. A somewhat "non-stretchy" fabric cover is highly recommended.

Firmness: Pink, CF-42AC, Medium-soft, popular, Often used on top of a layer of Blue to give great softness and energy absorbing capability.

Size: 1" x 16" x 18" (25 x 406 x 457 mm)

$35 In Stock
CONFOR-Foam-Blue-1x16x18 CONFORŪ Foam Seat Cushion - Blue - 1x16x18" - Popular
This seat cushion material is an investment in your comfort and safety.  It dramatically increases cockpit comfort - especially on long flights. A somewhat "non-stretchy" fabric cover is highly recommended.

Firmness: Blue, CF-45AC, Medium-firm, Most Popular, Recommended by the manufacturer when only a single layer of padding is used.  Often used below a layer of Pink to give great energy absorbing capability below the comfort of the Pink layer.

Size: 1" x 16" x 18" (25 x 406 x 457 mm)

$35
 
In Stock
CONFOR-Foam-Green-1x16x18 CONFORŪ Foam Seat Cushion - Green - 1x16x18"
This seat cushion material is an investment in your comfort and safety.  It dramatically increases cockpit comfort - especially on long flights. A somewhat "non-stretchy" fabric cover is highly recommended.

Firmness: Green, CF-47AC, Firm, Used below a layer of Blue and Pink layers when there is room for 3 layers.  This version offers the best energy absorption in warmer climates. However, it is very, very hard (stiff) at room temperature.    I mean, this stuff is really hard.  Did I mention that it is really hard...  For that reason, I recommend the blue version for most applications. 

Size: 1" x 16" x 18" (25 x 406 x 457 mm)

$35
 
In Stock
CONFOR-Foam-Cover-1x16x18

Fabric Cover - 1" x 16" x 18" (25 x 406 x 457 mm)
This optional fabric cover offers more comfort and sweat absorption than foam alone.  The light tan color looks great in any glider cockpit and is light in color so it won't get too hot in the sun.  The simple design avoids the use of Velcro or zippers by offering a simple doubled-over fabric flap opening on the bottom.  The cover also protects the foam from sunlight - to avoid degradation due to exposure.  It is very important to cover the foam. You will get a mess of small foam crumbs in your cockpit over time if you don't cover the foam with some sort of fabric material. The CONFOR Foam will also crack over time as it stretches when compressed
- if not kept in a somewhat "non-stretchy" fabric cover.

The cover can be removed and washed at any time.  However, one customer has mentioned that the cover shrunk a lot when washed and dried. I recommend air-drying the covers rather than drying in a dryer.

$35 In Stock
Multiple-Layer, Small Size
CONFOR-Foam-Pink-Blue-1x16x18 CONFORŪ Foam Seat Cushion - Pink & Blue - 1x16x18"
This seat cushion material is an investment in your comfort and safety.  It dramatically increases cockpit comfort - especially on long flights. A somewhat "non-stretchy" fabric cover is highly recommended.

This is a custom made cushion with a 1/2" (12.7 mm) thick blue (medium-firm) cushion and 1/2" (12.7 mm) thin pink (medium-soft) cushion glued together for a total thickness of 1" (25.4 mm). 

Size: 1" x 16" x 18" (25 x 406 x 457 mm)

$45
 
In Stock
CONFOR-Foam-Cover-1x16x18

Fabric Cover - 1" x 16" x 18" (25 x 406 x 457 mm)
This optional fabric cover offers more comfort and sweat absorption than foam alone.  The light tan color looks great in any glider cockpit and is light in color so it won't get too hot in the sun.  The simple design avoids the use of Velcro or zippers by offering a simple doubled-over fabric flap opening on the bottom.  The cover also protects the foam from sunlight - to avoid degradation due to exposure.  It is very important to cover the foam. You will get a mess of small foam crumbs in your cockpit over time if you don't cover the foam with some sort of fabric material. The CONFOR Foam will also crack over time as it stretches when compressed
- if not kept in a somewhat "non-stretchy" fabric cover.

The cover can be removed and washed at any time.  However, one customer has mentioned that the cover shrunk a lot when washed and dried. I recommend air-drying the covers rather than drying in a dryer.

$35 In Stock
CONFOR-Foam-Pink-Blue-2x16x18 CONFORŪ Foam Seat Cushion - Pink & Blue - 2x16x18" - Popular - Fabric Covered Version is Perfect for Club Gliders
This seat cushion material is an investment in your comfort and safety.  It dramatically increases cockpit comfort - especially on long flights.

This is a custom made cushion with a 1" (25.4 mm) thick blue (medium-firm) cushion and 1" (25.4 mm) thin pink (medium-soft) cushion glued together for a total thickness of 2" (50.8 mm).  This provides the best comfort and energy absorption - if you have room for a 2" cushion. A somewhat "non-stretchy" fabric cover is highly recommended.

Size: 2" x 16" x 18" (51 x 406 x 457 mm)

$80
 
In Stock
CONFOR-Foam-Cover-2x16x18

Fabric Cover - 2" x 16" x 18" (51 x 406 x 457 mm)
This optional fabric cover offers more comfort and sweat absorption than foam alone.  The light tan color looks great in any glider cockpit and is light in color so it won't get too hot in the sun.  The simple design avoids the use of Velcro or zippers by offering a simple doubled-over fabric flap opening on the bottom.  The cover also protects the foam from sunlight - to avoid degradation due to exposure.  It is very important to cover the foam. You will get a mess of small foam crumbs in your cockpit over time if you don't cover the foam with some sort of fabric material. The CONFOR Foam will also crack over time as it stretches when compressed
- if not kept in a somewhat "non-stretchy" fabric cover.

The cover can be removed and washed at any time.  However, one customer has mentioned that the cover shrunk a lot when washed and dried. I recommend air-drying the covers rather than drying in a dryer.

$40 In Stock
Single-Layer, Large Size
CONFOR-Foam-Yellow-1x18x40

CONFORŪ Foam Seat Cushion - Yellow - 1x18x40"
This seat cushion material is an investment in your comfort and safety.  It dramatically increases cockpit comfort - especially on long flights. A somewhat "non-stretchy" fabric cover is highly recommended.

Firmness: Yellow, CF-40AC, Very soft and extremely comfortable, but bottoms out easily.  Often used on top of layers of Blue and Pink to give extreme comfort.

Size: 1" x 18" x 40" (25 x 457 x 1016 mm)

$80
 
In Stock
CONFOR-Foam-Pink-1x18x40

CONFORŪ Foam Seat Cushion - Pink - 1x18x40"
This seat cushion material is an investment in your comfort and safety.  It dramatically increases cockpit comfort - especially on long flights. A somewhat "non-stretchy" fabric cover is highly recommended.

Firmness: Pink, CF-42AC, Medium-soft, popular, Often used on top of a layer of Blue to give great softness and energy absorbing capability.

Size: 1" x 18" x 40" (25 x 457 x 1016 mm)

$80
 
In Stock
CONFOR-Foam-Blue-1x18x40

CONFORŪ Foam Seat Cushion - Blue - 1x18x40" - Popular
This seat cushion material is an investment in your comfort and safety.  It dramatically increases cockpit comfort - especially on long flights. A somewhat "non-stretchy" fabric cover is highly recommended.

Firmness: Blue, CF-45AC, Medium-firm, Most Popular, Recommended by the manufacturer when only a single layer of padding is used.  Often used below a layer of Pink to give great energy absorbing capability below the comfort of the Pink layer.

Size: 1" x 18" x 40" (25 x 457 x 1016 mm)

$80
 
In Stock
CONFOR-Foam-Green-1x18x40

CONFORŪ Foam Seat Cushion - Green - 1x18x40"
This seat cushion material is an investment in your comfort and safety.  It dramatically increases cockpit comfort - especially on long flights. A somewhat "non-stretchy" fabric cover is highly recommended.

Firmness: Green, CF-47AC, Firm, Used below a layer of Blue and Pink layers when there is room for 3 layers.  This version offers the best energy absorption in warmer climates. However, it is very, very hard (stiff) at room temperature.    I mean, this stuff is really hard.  Did I mention that it is really hard...  For that reason, I recommend the blue version for most applications. 

Size: 1" x 18" x 40" (25 x 457 x 1016 mm)

$80 In Stock
CONFOR-Foam-Cover-1x18x40

Fabric Cover - 1" x 18" x 40" (25 x 457 x 1016 mm)
This optional fabric cover offers more comfort and sweat absorption than foam alone.  The light tan color looks great in any glider cockpit and is light in color so it won't get too hot in the sun.  The simple design avoids the use of Velcro or zippers by offering a simple doubled-over fabric flap opening on the bottom.  The cover also protects the foam from sunlight - to avoid degradation due to exposure.  It is very important to cover the foam.  You will get a mess of small foam crumbs in your cockpit over time if you don't cover the foam with some sort of fabric material. The CONFOR Foam will also crack over time as it stretches when compressed
- if not kept in a somewhat "non-stretchy" fabric cover.

The cover can be removed and washed at any time.  However, one customer has mentioned that the cover shrunk a lot when washed and dried. I recommend air-drying the covers rather than drying in a dryer.

$80 In Stock

Cumulus Soaring, Inc.
Paul E. Remde

8661 Connelly Place
Savage, Minnesota 55378
USA


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